A Customs and Police investigation has resulted in the arrest of seven overseas nationals for the attempted import of at least 100-120 kilograms of methamphetamine disguised as concrete inside the base of outdoor umbrella stands.
In August 2017, Customs’ intelligence flagged a 1.4 tonne sea freight consignment from China declared as ‘outdoor leisure products’ - swings, slides, a furniture set, and garden lights. Extensive examination revealed methamphetamine mixed with gypsum hidden in 16 concrete outdoor umbrella stands.
The extracted methamphetamine’s purity is still to be finalised, and is estimated to be at least between 100-120 kilograms with a street value of around $100-120 million. Based on the NZ Drug Harm Index, this amount has avoided a potential social and community harm cost of between $124 - 148 million.