Meth bust in Gisborne

Meth bust in Gisborne

National News

Eleven motor vehicles, an indoor cannabis-growing operation, stolen property, firearms, $40,000 cash and $60,000 worth of methamphetamine were found yesterday by Gisborne police during raids on gang-connected properties.

Two armed offender squads from Gisborne and Hawke's Bay were used in the raids yesterday, which targetted major suppliers of methamphetamine in the city. Six people will be appearing in the Gisborne District Court today on a variety of charges. Four have been charged with dealing methamphetamine and two have been charged with cultivating cannabis for supply.

Police searches of seven properties in Gisborne found:

• $40,000 cash
• $60,000 worth of methamphetamine
• 5 Harley Davidson motorbikes
• 1 Hot Rod car
• 1 S Type Jaguar
• 1 Ford Mondeo
• 1 Hi-Lux
• 2 busses
• 200 cannabis plants (estimated value $200,000)
• Thousands of dollars' worth of stolen property
• Two firearms found with large amount of meth, cash and ammunition

Detective Senior Sergeant Craig Scott of Gisborne CIB said the 11 vehicles had a combined value of $200,000 and would be the subject of a proceeds of crime application, with forfeiture being sought through the courts.

The indoor cannabis-growing operation was set up in three bedrooms of a house. There were 200 cannabis plants in various stages of growth and with an estimated potential value of $200,000.

Mr Scott said the stolen property included a large number of electrical items. Two firearms were also found with a stash of methamphetamine and cash along with a significant amount of ammunition.

Fifty police staff were involved in the operation, that was the result of an ongoing investigation into the methamphetamine trade in Gisborne.
The discovery of the stolen property was more proof that it is used as currency for drug dealing, promoting associated crimes like burglary and theft, police say.

Mr Scott said yesterday's operation would have a significant impact on the availability of the "pernicious" drug in the community.

Gisborne Area Commander Inspector Sam Aberahama said methamphetamine and its associated activities had only a destructive influence on the community.

"There is nothing good, or right, about this drug. It is vile, it is disgusting and it is a killer. Police will continue to put pressure on people who make this drug, sell it and use it. We have not finished - there will be no let-up in our efforts to rid the community of these people who make and sell the drug," he said.

Methamphetamine was one of the top contributors to all crime throughout the country. In recent weeks, police in Gisborne had arrested three senior Mongrel Mob members after finding several ounces of the drug on them.

Mr Aberahama said the local Gisborne community had had "a gutsful" of meth.

"They shouldn't tolerate it and they won't tolerate it. As our police vehicles drove down the street in convoy yesterday on the way to the target properties, we had neighbours coming out on the footpath clapping and cheering us. People don't want it in their house, their street or their city."

Mr Scott said people in the community knew who the drug dealers were.

"We ask that they provide the police with information that will assist us in removing the problem. Yesterday's operation was helped immensely by valuable information coming from the community and is a good example of how we can work together to produce results," Mr Scott said.

Most of the people arrested yesterday were beneficiaries - "but clearly were in a much better financial position than those people paying the tax to support them and their families."

Anyone with information about methamphetamine or other drugs should contact their local police station, or information can be left anonymously on Crimestoppers 0800 555 111.

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