Two baggage handlers arrested for alleged meth smuggling at Auckland Airport

The methamphetamine was found inside a backpack.


The methamphetamine was found inside a backpack.

Two baggage handlers have been arrested for allegedly attempting to smuggle 4.6 kilograms of methamphetamine through Auckland International Airport.

The men, aged 23 and 19, have been charged with importing methamphetamine after the drugs were located in a backpack that arrived from Los Angeles.

The backpack arrived on Air New Zealand flight NZ5 on November 11.

Inside the backpack, 4.6kg of meth was found, which had a street value of up to $870,000.

* Fourteen more people in court over drug smuggling at Auckland port and airport
* Baggage handlers charged in meth sting worked for Air New Zealand
* Auckland Airport baggage handlers among group charged over half-tonne of meth importation

The meth would be worth about $870,000 on the streets.

NZ Customs/Supplied

The meth would be worth about $870,000 on the streets.

Customs investigations manager Cam Moore said the seizure and arrests were a warning about the risks faced when people were willing to abuse the trust and access they were given to work at New Zealand’s border.

“We know this risk exists and we are always watching out for the signs.

“We also need everyone else to watch out and help protect Aotearoa New Zealand by noticing and reporting suspicious behavior to Customs confidentially – whether it’s something unusual at an airport, or in the freight and maritime environments,” Moore said.

Police seized $500,000 in cash after a sting targeting baggage handlers allegedly smuggling methamphetamine into New Zealand.

The baggage handlers are set to appear at the Manukau District Court later this month.

Last November, a number of baggage handlers were arrested for their alleged involvement in the importation of half a tonne of methamphetamine from Malaysia and the United States.

If you know or suspect someone may be involved in illegal activity, call Customs on 0800 WE PROTECT (0800 937 768) a 24-hour confidential hotline, or contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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