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Calm Paléo festival sees decrease in crime

Caroline Bishop · 27 Jul 2015, 14:11

Published: 27 Jul 2015 14:11 GMT+02:00

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Paléo, which ran from July 20th to 26th, saw 270,000 spectators turn up to see performances from Robbie Williams, Johnny Hallyday, Sting, Joan Baez, Robert Plant, Patti Smith and The Script, with David Guetta bringing events to a close on Sunday night.

In a statement, police said the overall crime level was low in proportion to the number of people attending the festival.

The number of thefts was down on last year, with just 19 reported incidents against 30 in 2014 and 100 in 2013.

However the number of drug-related arrests was up on last year, with 170 people booked for the use or traffic of drugs including cannabis, amphetamines and ecstasy, against 133 in 2014.

Some 15 people were arrested for counterfeiting entry tickets for the popular festival, which sold out in under an hour when tickets went on sale on April 21st.

Inclement weather on Wednesday and Friday resulted in the implementation of extra security measures to secure the site and protect festivalgoers, but did not disrupt the festival as last year.

In 2014 heavy rain turned the l’Asse site into a mudbath, forcing organizers to close some carparks, provoking three-hour queues to exit the remaining parking areas.

The 40th anniversary festival encountered no such problems over its seven-day run, increased by one day on previous editions in honour of the big birthday.

Speaking to newspaper 20 Minutes, festival president Daniel Rossellat said the extended run could be repeated be in the future.

“It’s not on the cards, but I won’t rule out doing that again. We just need a valid artistic reason to do so,” he said.

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However Rossellat admitted that starting the festival on a Monday wasn’t a good idea.

“Lots of issues arise the day before the festival begins. If that’s a Sunday, it becomes more complicated, particularly for transport companies or stallholders.”

For the time being, six days are planned for next year’s festival, which will run from July 19th to 24th.

For more news from Switzerland, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

Caroline Bishop (news@thelocal.ch)

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