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Rap Music Banned At This Year's Sydney Royal Easter Show As Police Crack Down On Violence

4 April 2023 | 11:08 am | Jessie Lynch

“We’ve got all the evidence that we need to demonstrate that rap music is being used to lure youth into a life of crime.”

Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Ride operators at this year's Sydney Royal Easter Show have been instructed not to play rap music in a bizarre bid to crack down on violence at the popular annual event.

It's just one of the strict new rules police will put into action when the show opens its doors on April 6 at the Sydney Showground following the death of 17-year-old carnival worker Uati “Pele” Faletolu, who was stabbed to death in the middle of a crowd in 2022.

A 14-year-old and two 18-year-olds were later charged with murder, and are currently behind bars on remand.

The attack sparked concerns about safety at the event, which attracts thousands of families each year. In response, police will also beef up their presence at the show and implement additional security measures.

According to the Daily Telegraph, in addition to the rap music ban, lighting has been increased, anyone being "anti-social" will be immediately evicted and the event will now finish up at the new time of 9.30 pm.

NSW Police have also set up Strike Force APACE in order to identify "dangerous individuals" linked to Sydney's postcode wars and ban them from attending the event, with Assistant Commissioner Stuart Smith saying, “Community safety is our number one priority – and with that in mind – police will be out in numbers at the show."

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“The message is simple: anyone looking for trouble is not welcome, and will be dealt with accordingly.”

He added that the decision to ban rap music was founded on evidence that the Comanchero bikie gang had used it to recruit young people to carry out serious violent crimes.

“Rap music is being used to lure youth into a life of crime,” he told reporters.

“Through rap music investment, they procured a significant youth gang problem to carry out violent crime."

“We’ve got all the evidence that we need to demonstrate that rap music is being used to lure youth into a life of crime.”

Sydney Royal Easter Show general manager Murry Wilton made no apologies for the Draconian new rules, insisting that the changes would make the event a "safe environment" for attendees.

"Following the incident last year we did a detailed security risk analysis, we have been working with NSW Police for months on this and the outcome is a fairly detailed, and sophisticated plan," he told The Daily Telegraph. 

"The carnival operators are all on-board with us closing earlier, lighting up more and changing the kind of music that's played. They want it to be a safe environment for everyone."

The Sydney Royal Easter Show kicks off on Thursday, April 6, and runs for 11 days until April 17.