Hardstyle festival Midnight Mafia took place over the weekend, seeing over 14,000 partygoers gather once again at Sydney Showground. The popular event was subject to 187 police searches and a seizure of 3500 MDMA capsules, with one woman arrested with a staggering 1600 pills on her person.
However, a separate issue has arisen from the actions of police on Saturday night, and it is surrounding a new, and certainly confusing rule that saw attendees refused entry after being searched without having any illicit substances found on them.
As reported by News.com.au, numerous attendees have taken to social media venting their frustrations with what went down, with one describing the scenario as such: “I was one of the innocent people who got pulled aside to be stripped searched and when cleared was still not allowed back in… Was even threatened to be taken to the hospital because they believed I was carrying drugs in internally. (I) had my ticket deactivated and told I would be refunded. I don’t blame the event organiser. He was even p**sed off with had happened.”
The confusion surrounding this ruling was not made any clearer by police ay the event, with the festival goer adding: “But when I asked police three times who’s put this new rule in they gave me three separate answers, So not even a straight forward answer. — (it’s) absolutely ridiculous.”
Greens MP David Shoebridge described the situation as “aggressive and unwarranted” and a “21st century witchcraft trail… It’s like when they used to throw people in the water and say if you’re a witch if you float and if you sink, you’re not — you can’t win either way,” he said.
Harder Stylers United (HSU) have shared a post to their Facebook detailing the events, saying they “are very unhappy by some of the results of the Police operation that took place at Midnight Mafia on the weekend. This policy had nothing to do with HSU. This was a NSW Police operation and contrary to comments made by some, HSU have no part in, or, can comment on any police tactics and operations. We have requested the names of people that were detected, stripped searched then told to leave the event, and, have been told today that police will have the list to us tomorrow. HSU will be refunding these peoples tickets, so please contact our Facebook to arrange a refund. This Policy will NOT happen ever again at an HSU Event. It is our personal belief that people are innocent until proven guilty.”
A spokeswoman from NSW Police has addressed the situation, saying anyone can be refused entry to a licensed premises if they are “suspected of drugs or alcohol… Our top priority for police is the safety of all event staff, performers and music fans throughout the festival.”