Home' North Harbour News : March 8th 2013 Contents Friday, March 8, 2013
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Round the Bays
BUSTED Rental homes found with
millions of dollars worth of drug
in garage and stash of cash
No cars here: One of six North Shore rental properties uncovered in a major international drug bust worth millions of dollars.
By MARYKE PENMAN
Extreme danger: Police are concerned over the risks caused by electrical
alterations made to convert homes into cannabis grow-houses.
Go to northharbournews.co.nz
to see footage from inside
a North Shore grow-house
caught in last week's drug
They've gone outside and
fiddled with the mains power
source. Now that's taking your
life into your own hands.
Inspector Bruce Good
LANDLORDS are urged to keep a
close eye on tenants after police
uncovered six North Shore proper-
ties involved in a multi-million dol-
lar methamphetamine syndicate.
Search warrants carried out on
rental homes in Glenfield, Camp-
bells Bay, Castor Bay and Browns
Bay last week found more than 600
fully grown cannabis plants, 28
grams of methamphetamine and
$90,000 cash hidden in one prop-
Eighty-seven cannabis plants
were found at a Silverdale property
last week, where a stolen vehicle
and guns were also recovered by
A Harley Davidson motorcycle
and a high performance car have
been seized in other searches.
Seven men and three women of
Vietnamese origin, aged between
18 and 34, are due to appear in the
North Shore District Court on
The 10 in custody are here on a
combination of either student or
visitor visas, or as Canadian
A New Zealander described as a
patched gang member has also
Two will face charges of con-
spiracy to import methampheta-
mine and importing methampheta-
The seizure is a significant mile-
stone in Operation Express, run by
the Organised Financial Crime
Agency New Zealand (OFCANZ) in
partnership with Canadian auth-
The inquiry was sparked in
December when Canadian auth-
orities found 6.6 kilograms of meth-
amphetamine concealed in truck
shock absorbers destined for New
The drug had an estimated street
value of $7 million and was traced
to Vancouver and the North Shore,
where large-scale cannabis cultiva-
tions were uncovered.
A further person has been
arrested and charged in relation to
the two shipments seized in
December and a previous three
additional importations to New
OFCANZ Detective Inspector
Bruce Good says he has no doubt
more properties will be revealed as
part of the drug syndicate.
Landlords, agents and the public
must remain vigilant and alert
police of any suspicious or drug-
related activity, he says.
Landlords need to be doing more
thorough inspections of their
properties, rather than just the
In some homes the kitchen and
dining areas look pretty standard,
but if you took the time to open
some of the other doors you d be
horrified by what you found, Mr
Fourteen search warrants have
been executed in the Auckland area
in recent weeks and in most cases
the suspects have been at home, he
Records show at least one grow-
house has been operational since
May last year.
On one occasion a Glenfield prop-
erty was found abandoned by
tenants who left cannabis plants
and thousands of dollars worth of
In this case the landlord went to
inspect their property after rent
payments were missed.
Mr Good says alterations to con-
vert homes into grow-houses are
dangerous to the point he has grave
concerns for police staff carrying
out the search warrants.
The electrical aspect is of great
concern. They ve gone outside and
fiddled with the mains power
source. Now that s taking your life
into your own hands.
We ve been dealing with live
wires hanging loose . . . houses left
without any earthing mechanism.
Mr Good says he doesn t know
why the North Shore attracts
this type of criminal activity.
Are the rents different? Are
there more available houses here?
Call the North Shore Policing
Station on 477 5000 or Crimestop-
pers on 0800 555 111 if you notice
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