Jul 28, 2023

Older NZ man could spend the rest of his life in Aussie prison system

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About 2kg of heroin was allegedly found in the man’s luggage. [Source: AFP]

An older New Zealand man could face life in prison after attempting to smuggle a large portion of heroin into Australia. 

The Australian Federal Police (AFP) charged the 77-year-old – who has yet to be named – with attempting to import about 2kg of heroin in his luggage through Melbourne International Airport on Wednesday.

Australian Border Force officers (ABF) examined the man’s luggage after he had arrived on a flight from Thailand and allegedly found white powder in the lining of the man’s suitcase.

The substance was tested and returned a presumptive positive result for heroin. About 2kg of heroin was allegedly removed from the suitcase. 

The man faced Melbourne Magistrates Court on Thursday and was remanded in custody.

The AFP charged the man with importing a marketable quantity of a border controlled substance, namely heroin. The maximum penalty for this offence is life imprisonment.

AFP Detective Acting Superintendent Amanda Glover said drug traffickers prey on the community to do the dangerous work.

“Every detection of drugs at the border keeps our community safer and ensure that drug traffickers cannot reap profits by preying on Australians.”

ABF Superintendent Kelly-anne Parish said ABF officers are highly skilled and are always on alert to detect and stop the importation of illicit substances coming into Australia.

“Criminals will try to hide illicit drugs in a variety of ways, however no matter the amount of drugs that are hidden, big or small, our officers have the technology and expertise to find them,” Supt Parish said.

For free and confidential advice about alcohol and other drug treatment services call the National Alcohol and Other Drug Hotline on 1800 250 015.

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