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Seizure and arrest by Police and Customs, targeting organised crime in Southland

05.44pm 20 July 2022


A successful joint operation by NZ Police and Customs has resulted in the seizure of a significant quantity of methamphetamine and an arrest for importation.

Issued by Police Media Centre

Attributed to Detective Sergeant Dave Kennelly, Southland Police Organised Crime Group

A successful joint operation by New Zealand Police and Customs has resulted in the seizure of a significant quantity of methamphetamine and an arrest for importation.  

Half-a-kilogram of methamphetamine was concealed within a box of Lego from the USA and intercepted by Customs at the border with an estimated street value of between $250,000 and $300,000.

As part of the operation a search warrant was executed at a rural Omaui property on Monday night supported by the Armed Offenders Squad. A 46 year old man was arrested and charged with Importing a Class A controlled drug.

The investigation is ongoing, and Police cannot rule out further arrests and charges being filed.

Police continue to step-up enforcement and the disruption of unlawful gang activity across the country as part of Operation Cobalt.

Our message to those involved is clear – we have zero tolerance for any gang-related violence and drug offending.

Methamphetamine devastates the most vulnerable in our communities, while organised criminal groups continue to profit from this type of offending. 

We are committed to disrupting and dismantling the operations of those who seek to profit from this harm, and we are confident this operation will result in a major disruption to the supply of methamphetamine in our region.

Police and partner agencies are working hard to ensure we keep our communities safe, and we will continue to actively target those involved in criminal activity.

We need the local Southland community to help us address unlawful behaviour in our region.

Cam Moore, Customs Manager Investigations says, "Customs is committed to working with our partner agencies, domestically and internationally, to combat organised criminal networks together. By sharing intelligence and working closely, we will continue to dismantle the groups who choose to bring illicit drugs into Aotearoa New Zealand and profit from the harm they cause.”

Information can be given to Police by contacting 111 if it is happening now and 105 after the fact.

If for whatever reason you do not want to speak to Police directly, you can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online via www.crimestoppers-nz.org

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