Melbourne protests: Parade of ARRESTS replaces Grand Final Parade

Melbourne protests: Parade of ARRESTS replaces Grand Final Parade
Melbourne protests: Parade of ARRESTS replaces Grand Final Parade

Residents of Melbourne have been greeted by a Grand Final parade of law enforcement as police fight to get the upper hand on demonstrators. 

In disturbing scenes, Victoria Police pounced on anyone who entered the city's iconic Bourke Street Mall on Friday morning.

Hundreds of cops swarmed the streets and surrounded major landmarks almost a week after chaotic protests began, led by tradies revolting over vaccine mandates and spurred on by anti-vaxxer troublemakers. 

Just two years ago on the eve of the AFL Grand Final, the city was a sea of colour for the annual parade - but today the dominant shade was navy blue.

People going about their business were being stopped, searched and interrogated about their reason for being in town. 

A woman is detained as police patrol the Melbourne CBD talking to pedestrians and making several arrests to try and stop planned protests

A woman is detained as police patrol the Melbourne CBD talking to pedestrians and making several arrests to try and stop planned protests

In disturbing scenes, Victoria Police pounced on anyone who entered the Bourke Street Mall on Friday to quiz them about why they were there. Pictured: A woman is arrested

In disturbing scenes, Victoria Police pounced on anyone who entered the Bourke Street Mall on Friday to quiz them about why they were there. Pictured: A woman is arrested

One woman was handcuffed and taken away by several officers in Melbourne

One woman was handcuffed and taken away by several officers in Melbourne

Victorian police officers speak with a person ahead of a planned rally against mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations in Melbourne

Victorian police officers speak with a person ahead of a planned rally against mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations in Melbourne

Victorian police officers wearing gloves and body cameras detain a man in the CBD

Victorian police officers wearing gloves and body cameras detain a man in the CBD

Daily Mail Australia observed one woman from leafy South Yarra take on police after being asked to produce identification.

She was among the lucky ones to leave on foot and not in the back of a police van.

Others berated police as they were cuffed and taken away after failing to cough up a good enough reason for being in the CBD.

Police remained on high alert amid fears protesters will congregate in the city.

Just two years ago: The Grand Final parade in Melbourne before Richmond beat GWS in 2019

Just two years ago: The Grand Final parade in Melbourne before Richmond beat GWS in 2019 

Richmond fans lined the streets after their team won the Grand Final in 2019

Richmond fans lined the streets after their team won the Grand Final in 2019

Officers have been seen as far away as Collingwood, where they were guarding buildings along Johnston Street.

A large turn out by protesters had been expected after their failure to rally on Thursday.

Despite promises to protest every day, it appears the rallies may happen 'every other day' instead.

Police converged on Melbourne's Flagstaff Gardens just on 2pm after a protester called on people to rally there via a live stream.

The man was promptly arrested before anyone else showed up to follow his ill advised callout.  

Moronic protesters had alerted police via various live streams, which pinpointed their exact location.

Many of the protesters, numbered at less than 100, escaped.

It is feared another protest may yet pop up somewhere also within or around Melbourne’s CBD.

epa09484629 Victorian Police officers detain a person ahead of a planned rally against mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations in Melbourne

epa09484629 Victorian Police officers detain a person ahead of a planned rally against mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations in Melbourne

The police helicopter continued to hover overhead ready to pinpoint any likely resistance

The police helicopter continued to hover overhead ready to pinpoint any likely resistance

Police patrol the Melbourne CBD including with horses after days of protests in the CBD

Police patrol the Melbourne CBD including with horses after days of protests in the CBD

A large presence of police are seen during a major operation to disrupt planned Hi-Vis Anti-lockdown protests in Melbourne

A large presence of police are seen during a major operation to disrupt planned Hi-Vis Anti-lockdown protests in Melbourne

Police remained on high alert across the CBD, with squads seen milling down random side streets.

The police helicopter continued to hover overhead ready to pinpoint any likely resistance.

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