Skip to main content

Lesson #3: Search Procedures for Drug Enforcement


Trainer guide covering a 7-hour course within a Illegal Narcotics & Drug Suppression Training. Developed by the Police Development Unit of the OSCE Spillover Monitor Mission to Skopje.


The goal of this lesson is to provide a general set of guidelines and procedures to assist police officers in planning and conducting searches of persons, premises and vehicles for the recovery of illegal drugs. Examples of the most typically common drug concealment areas will be introduced to demonstrate the infinite range of possibilities for concealment. The aim is to help police officers become more safe, perceptive and adaptable to effectively apply the legal and conditionally appropriate search efforts in order to successfully recover of illegal 

At the conclusion of this lesson, attending police officers will be able to:

  1. Identify the four distinctive types of search targets that define search considerations and methods to be employed.
  2. Define four (4) situations when the body search of individuals is legally justified.
  3. Describe the general guidelines that aid the effectiveness of a vehicle search.
  4. Define the proper procedures for searching unusual items such as motorcycles, or a vehicle occupied by dogs, pets or children and their associated objects.
  5. Identify and describe the three (3) preparatory procedures that directly influence the operational legality and effectiveness of a premises search.
  6. Demonstrate the considerations and pr ocedures to be followed whenconducting searches of premises.
  7. Demonstrate the proper procedure for searching luggage, boxes, closable containers or portable storage devices encountered during searches of persons, vehicles and premises.
  8. Given a scenario, identify the legal procedures a police officer must be aware of and appropriately apply when executing searches.