A major operation against organised crime by the New Zealand police has resulted in the seizure of more than 50 kg of cocaine and NZ$300,000 ($211,389) in cash, cocaine, and cryptocurrency wallets, while nine people were arrested, Police Minister Poto Williams said on Thursday.
“This major crackdown on class A drugs and money laundering has today made our streets safer,” Williams said in a statement.
New Zealand will not tolerate gangs and organised crime and has put a record number of the police on the frontline with a specific focus on organised crime, Williams said, adding the government’s record investment in the police will include 700 additional organised crime investigators, reports Xinhua news agency.
“This crackdown will go a long way to making New Zealanders safer by tackling the sale and supply of illicit drugs and serious money laundering activities that cause so much harm in our communities,” she said.
Operation Mist has seen 70 New Zealand police and New Zealand customs staff supported by police and customs international liaison networks, working with the US Drug Enforcement Administration, Colombian National Police, the Spanish Customs Service, and the Cook Island Customs Service, the Minister said.