''armed and dangerous fugitive'' was detained yesterday by
armed offenders squad members as part of a joint-agency
Dozens of armed, black-clad officers assembled in the car
park of the Taieri airfield to receive their briefing.
Within minutes, the first six-strong squad was in a Royal New
Zealand Air Force Iroquois helicopter bound for an
undisclosed rural Taieri location in search of an offender.
The operation involved 40 members of the Dunedin and
Invercargill squads, who were joined by police dog teams and
St John paramedics.
Dunedin AOS commander, Inspector Jason Guthrie, said this
type of large-scale training day involving the southern
squads took place about once a year.
''It is an opportunity for us to test ourselves in a rural
environment with groups we don't get to work with all the
time,'' he said.
''Training can only take you so far. The kind of people we
get on the squad are selected for their initiative and their
ability to be flexible.''
Insp Guthrie said members came from a variety of different
police roles and while the AOS role was, at times, exciting,
there were ''many cold, long nights without a lot of