Page last updated at 10:13 GMT, Saturday, 15 November 2008

Police office 'highlight' of trip

Police officer's reflective jacket
The station visit was hosted by Northern Constabulary officers

A visit to a police station was the highlight of a month-long trip to Scotland for youngsters affected by the Chernobyl nuclear plant disaster.

Children from Gomel in Belarus, one of the countries impacted by the reactor explosion in 1986, were hosted on the station visit by Northern Constabulary.

A message from organisers included letters of thanks presented to the Northern Joint Police Board.

Radioactive fall-out has left a legacy of problems, including pollution.

Belarus took 70% of the fall-out from the Ukrainian power plant - one fifth of the country's agricultural land was contaminated.

We understand that the one month visit to Scotland can add as much as four years to the life expectancy of the children
Letter of appreciation
The letter from the trip's organisers said the visit to the station was the highlight.

They went on to write: "We understand that the one month visit to Scotland can add as much as four years to the life expectancy of the children."

Previously, letters of appreciation presented to the board revealed praise for a traffic warden for guarding an expensive sports car for 35 minutes after its owner left it unlocked and with the engine running.

The owner, whose identity has not been revealed, said it could have been a costly mistake as the car cost 70,000.

Meanwhile, Northern's Chief Constable Ian Latimer reported to the board that crime detection rates in the force area remained high.

He said: "The overall picture is extremely positive.

"Our excellent detection rates remain well above the national average and are the envy of other forces. This demonstrates the continued hard work, dedication and commitment of our officers across the Highlands and Islands."

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