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In a Customs-controlled Area


What to look out for if you work within a CCA

Customs-controlled Areas (CCA) are access points for people and goods. They include places where international passengers enter or leave New Zealand; international cargo and items are inspected; and duty-free or excisable items are made, stored or sold. Some logistics and transport companies are also CCAs.

Find out more about CCAs

If your organisation operates within a CCA, you can play an important role in protecting New Zealand from cross-border crime, including drug smuggling. Be alert to the signs of cross-border crime, which may vary depending on the nature of your CCA and the work or activities that happen there.

In and around any CCA

Look out for customers who:

  • seem to be trying to conceal their identity or are reluctant to provide personal information
  • provide identification that appears false
  • ask questions about how packages or goods are checked
  • continuously check on when their goods are ready for collection
  • ask questions about law enforcement activities
  • are overly interested in specific locations
  • prefer to settle their accounts early or insist on paying in cash

Keep your business safe by asking questions and doing checks on unexpected walk-ins and unknown agents. If there’s a reason to turn away business, it’s a reason to report.

Be alert to anyone working in, or with, your CCA who:

  • seems nervous, secretive or out of place
  • seems to be trying to conceal a package or object – possibly in inappropriate or bulky clothing
  • tries to access or alter information unnecessarily
  • carries unusual equipment or hardware
  • arrives or leaves work at unusual hours
  • displays or talks about possessions that indicate unusual wealth

If you deal with documents

Look out for unusual paperwork or details such as:

  • unusual or incorrect flight numbers, broker numbers or ports of discharge
  • inconsistent value of goods versus cost of shipping
  • a number of consignments from one consignor to a number of different consignees
  • unusual instructions like ‘do not open’
  • vague or unclear descriptions

If you work in the warehouse or deliver cargo

Look out for packages, goods or shipping containers with:

  • numbers that don’t match the paperwork
  • descriptions that don’t seem to match the shape, size or weight
  • different sizes, shapes or weights when the descriptions say the contents are the same
  • excessive packaging or signs of damage, modification or tampering
  • unusual smells or noises
  • unusual instructions like ‘do not open’
  • a hotel, motel, hostel, vacant lot, empty house or your business listed as the delivery address

Be alert to consignees/receivers who:

  • refuse to provide a physical delivery address
  • ask to pick up a shipment at your business or have it re-routed to a drop-box
  • wait outside of a house or building to collect their delivery

Often it’s not what you see, but what you hear. Wherever you are, if you hear about possible illegal activity, let us know.

You know your environment. If it doesn’t seem right, report it.

Your tip could make a difference. You do not have to provide any personal information to make a report.

If it’s an emergency

Call 111 and ask for Police when:

  • someone is badly injured or in danger
  • there's a serious risk to life or property
  • a crime is being committed and the offenders are still there or have just left
  • it's happening now or has just happened.

This information is available on the New Zealand Police website.

Before you report