New Zealand police claimed to have conducted one of the most critical seizures of cocaine. The drug was hidden in a most unique way.
The officials stated that they recovered cocaine worth $10 million (AU$9.6 million) from inside a statue of a horse’s head. The huge diamante-encrusted statue weighed 365 kg and was around three feet tall. According to reports, almost 35 kg of bricks were shipped from Mexico to Auckland by air in May. After six weeks of investigation, an American, 56, and two Mexicans, 44 and 29, were arrested over the weekend. The arrest was made at the Auckland International Airport on Saturday.
All of them were presented at Manakau District Court. They have been charged with importing a Class A drug. The crime, if committed, along with possessing the type of drug he used to sell, will result in the criminal undergoing life imprisonment.
Deputy Superintendent Virginia Le Bas claimed that the case was a “significant win” for the nation. He added that the department should be proud of itself for inspecting the case and discovering the truth at the earliest of its stages. “This is obviously an extremely large amount of cocaine, and in the past we’ve only found very small amounts of this drug,” Auckland’s organized crime’s officer-in-charge Detective Senior Sgt. Colin Parmenter said, as quoted by UPI.
“Prior to this, the average amount of cocaine seized by police each year was around 250 grams. What this find tells us though is that there is obviously a demand for it. While it’s possible that this statue may have been sent on to another country, there’s every possibility that the cocaine was destined for the New Zealand market and we would be naive to think otherwise.”
Police are still trying to find out whether NZ was the final destination of the drug racket. Another question they are attempting to derive an answer to is if the cocaine recovered from the statue was meant to be sold in New Zealand or was to be taken to some other nation. The police officers revealed that the 29-year-old was arrested from Christchurch and is likely to face the same charges. Although several arrests have already been made, there are possibilities of more arrests.