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NEWS > 07 September 2009

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The Copenhagen Post
07 September 2009
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Ethics in Policing

Denmark: Free coffee for cops

Police have been paying extra attention to shops and restaurants where they are also getting freebies and discounts

There have long been jokes about police and their fondness for doughnuts, but it seems that coffee is the order of the day for cops looking for freebies.

Politiken newspaper reports that the 7-Eleven convenience store at Højbro Plads Square in central Copenhagen has been giving out free coffee to officers in a bid to create more security at the premises.

The store is located at a busy junction of two pedestrian streets and the store manager arranged the deal with local police, according to manager of the 7-Eleven chain Lars Simonsen.

‘This is a store that is open day and night and there can be trouble at nighttime. That’s why the owner made a deal with the police so they can get free coffee in exchange for more security or just to keep up a good relations with police,’ Simonsen said.

Police sources told the paper that it is common for city cops to get free coffee and discount meals from a number of central shops and restaurants.

Copenhagen Police chief Johan Reimann said he was unaware of the particular case, but that officers should not be accepting regular offers of free coffee.

‘Of course in individual cases it could be okay. For example if Mrs Jensen has had a break-in at her house and offers the responding officers a coffee,’ said Reimann.

The news comes seven years after the ‘Whoppergate’ scandal in Aalborg, North Jutland, when a local Burger King was found to be giving free burgers to local cops in order to discourage theft and crime in the restaurant.

Following extensive reports of police receiving discounts and freebies in 2002, police authorities said they were cracking down on such behaviour.

In light of the recent freebies, the Police Union said it had already launched a campaign focusing on ethics and morals.

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