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Scandal throws spotlight on security
Chris Bergroth. Picture: Michael Wilson/The West Australian

The fake cop scandal has highlighted the poor security at police stations throughout the State and should prompt an immediate upgrade of all facilities, the WA Police Union said yesterday.

Union president Russell Armstrong said he was aghast at revelations that Seville Grove man Chris Bergroth, 18, allegedly impersonated a police officer and gained access to secure police buildings on nine separate occasions.

Mr Bergroth is facing more than 30 charges over visits to the Perth Watch House, Curtin House and police headquarters last month.

A 25-year-old custody officer has been stood down while internal affairs detectives investigate whether he helped Mr Bergroth. Police are also investigating the suspected involvement of a third person not employed by WA Police.

Mr Bergroth told _The West Australian _on Wednesday he had managed to get a police uniform by approaching the security booth at police headquarters, asking to use the toilet and then once inside grabbing the attire from a clothing bin.

He then left through a side entrance so he did not have to return past the booth.

Mr Armstrong said the union had long been concerned about the lack of security at many of the State's police stations, particularly those built more than 20 years ago.

"Security is lax in a lot of these stations and we need to sort that out," he said. "But we do not have the resources or the money to have sufficient security. We have seen this incident happen now and it's very lucky that it was not something very serious."

Former deputy police commissioner and Edith Cowan University professor Murray Lampard said it was fortunate Mr Bergroth had not been linked to a criminal gang.

"If he had been a plant from an organised crime group you would hate to think what could have happened," Professor Lampard said.

"This is a wake-up call and they (police) need to review and revisit their security immediately."