Police are investigating the robbery and sexual assault on a 22-year-old female and 25-year-old male who are Dutch tourists currently holidaying in New Zealand.
The attack on the tourists occurred at approximately 6.40am this morning, (Thursday 15 January), at Tuatapere in Western Southland.
A male offender has entered the vehicle the two tourists were sleeping in at a camping ground in Tuatapere. The offender threatened the occupants of the vehicle with a knife and has then sexually assaulted the 22-year-old female.
He has demanded cash from the victims before fleeing the scene. The offender was disguised and a detailed description is not available at this stage said the officer-in-charge of the case, Detective Sergeant Dave Nelson.
Police believe a second person was present outside the vehicle but not involved in the attack.
Police are also investigating the burglary of a property in Tuatapere that occurred on the same morning to establish if it is connected to the attack.
Approximately 20 staff are working on the case, Detective Nelson said.
Police would like to hear from anybody who may have seen any suspicious activity, people or vehicles in the Tuatapere area overnight on 14 and 15 January 2009.
"We are in the early stages of this investigation and following a number of leads," he said.
People with any information should contact their local police station or Detective Dave Nelson at Invercargill Police on (03) 211-0400.
The victims are being cared for by Victim Support and Invercargill Police.
Note to media: There will be a further media release tomorrow morning at approximately 11am.