Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 

Mushrooms not so magic for Nelson retiree

21 February 2013

Mushrooms not so magic for Nelson retiree

People importing drugs for personal use have been put on notice following the sentencing of a Nelson retiree who received cannabis and magic mushrooms from a friend through the mail.

Michael Bortnick, 65, was sentenced to 200 hours of community service earlier this week for importing cannabis and the class A drug psilocine, known as magic mushrooms.

Customs officers at Auckland’s International Mail Centre seized a package in May last year addressed to a fake name at his Nelson address. The package contained 30 grams of cannabis and 13 grams of mushrooms hidden inside plastic tubes. The package had been declared as a book cover. Tests confirmed the mushrooms were psilocine.

A search warrant was carried out at his home where Customs officers also found drug paraphernalia and a small amount of cannabis and cannabis seeds.

Customs Manager Investigations, Mark Day, says the quantity seized was relatively small, but importing any amount of drugs is a serious offence.

“All incoming mail is screened by Customs using a number of processes and offenders will be caught and prosecuted.”

During sentencing Judge Miller said the offender had used a false name but his home address, evidently believing that if the package was intercepted it would be destroyed because the amounts were small.

Bortnick admitted that he had asked a friend from the United States to send the magic mushrooms and that the drugs were intended for his own personal use.

He has no previous convictions and pleaded guilty at the first reasonable opportunity.

The New Zealand Customs Service is the government organisation that protects the community from potential risks arising from international trade and travel, while facilitating the legitimate movement of people and goods across the border. Established in 1840, it is New Zealand’s oldest government agency.

As New Zealand's gatekeepers our role includes intercepting contraband (such as illegal drugs); checking travellers and their baggage cargo and mail; protecting businesses against illegal trade; and assessing and collecting Customs duties, excise, and goods and services tax on imports. We use intelligence and risk assessment to target physical checks of containers, vessels or travellers. As a law enforcement agency we conduct investigations and audits, and prosecute offenders.

Customs works closely with other border agencies, in particular the NZ Police, Aviation Security, Environmental Science & Research and Immigration New Zealand.

More information about Customs can be found on our website: www.customs.govt.nz

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Budget

It may seem like Oliver to be so bold as to ask the Finance Minister for more gruel – but what the Dickens, Steven Joyce… is this Budget really as good as it gets?

Supposedly, the public was going to receive significant rewards – an election year lolly scramble no less – for the eight years of belt tightening that they’ve endured, and for the rundown of essential public services.

Well, what Budget 2017 delivered instead in Education and in Health were allocations barely sufficient to maintain the current levels of service delivery More>>

Scoop Full Coverage: of Budget Announcements & Reaction
Latest: Scoop Search

 
 

Auditor-General Stands Down For Investigation: Gordon Campbell On (Not) Taking Responsibility

So Martin Matthews, our current Auditor-General wishes he could have detected “earlier” the fraud that occurred on his watch at the Ministry of Transport. Hmmm. But he could have detected it earlier, surely? That’s the point. More>>

ALSO:

NGOs Pleased: Govt To Halt Collection Of Client Data

Brenda Pilott, the chair of ComVoices and national manager of Social Service Providers Aotearoa, congratulates the government on its decision to call a halt to the collection of individual client data until the concerns of not-for-profit service providers have been worked through. More>>

ALSO:

Gosh: Blasphemy Law Repeal Struck Down

Chris Hipkins, the MP who tabled a Supplementary Order Paper to add our Blasphemy Law to the Statutes Repeal Bill, said this was a "sad day for freedom of speech, tolerance, and leadership". More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Navy’s Dealings With Fat Leonard, And Twin Peaks

At an official level, our “she’ll be right” attitude routinely spills over into a keen resentment of anyone who suggests the outcomes may be less than satisfactory… The Navy has now gone one step beyond. It won’t even ask itself whether it did a good job. More>>

ALSO:

NZDF: Fifth Rotation Of Troops Heads To Iraq

The fifth rotation of New Zealand Defence Force troops left today for a six-month mission training Iraqi soldiers. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Demonising Of Iran

Will New Zealand still be willing to pursue its recent trade overtures to Iran, now that US President Donald Trump has used his speech in Riyadh to single out Iran as the main source of terrorism and instability in the Middle East? More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 

Opening The Election Supporters

 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election