Record number of arrests coming from public tip-offs

TIP offs to Crime Stoppers have resulted in a record number of arrests across regional Queensland, with drugs remaining the number one community gripe.

Of the 5565 charges laid across the state in 2013 as a result of Crime Stoppers reports, 1799 were for drug possession.

Another 43 charged were linked to drug trafficking operations.

Central Queensland recorded the highest number of drug arrests outside the Brisbane region.

Drugs valued at $1,200,376 were seized at Rockhampton and $825,773 at Mackay.

Further south, $738,599 worth of drugs were recovered on the Sunshine Coast and $561,784 at Bundaberg.

The recent introduction of online reporting - which grew by 84% in the past two years - helped bring home the best results the program had produced since it's inception in the late 80s, but Crime Stoppers CEO Trevor O'Hara believes anonymity remains the key to success.

He maintains the organisation has never once disclosed the identity of anyone who has made a report and he is confident that as community trust continues to grow, arrest rates will rise.

The ability to report without giving away personal details has proven particularly helpful in bringing down drug networks.

Mr O'Hara said as drug dealers were unlikely to "sit on a street corner with a sign and say 'come buy drugs over here,", police needed all the community information they could get.

"The drug trade is a very personal crime," Mr O'Hara said

"People see drug activity around their home and are very inclined to go away and say, 'I am not comfortable with this going on, but if I call this number, I then don't have to become involved because I know someone else is going to follow it up".

All up, 49,543 reports were made to Crime Stoppers in Queensland last year - leading to an additional six grievous bodily harm charges, 93 sexual offence charges and 210 weapons related charges.

Unlike other states, Queensland has an army of more than 500 volunteers, who go out into regional communities to educate people on how to report.

Mr O'Hara said their efforts, combined with the roll out of several marketing campaigns, would continue to instil trust in the community.

Anyone with information can phone Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

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