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

Greek Riddles:
Gordon Campbell On The Recent Smackdown Over Greece

There had been a fortnight of fevered buildup. Yet here we are in the aftermath of the February 28 showdown between the new Syriza government in Greece and the European Union “troika” and… no-one seems entirely sure what happened. Did the asteroid miss Earth?

It seems to have. The EU still exists. Syriza is now claiming a victory of sorts. It doesn’t help that the only people who do appear to be sure (the Greeks buckled) are claiming the exact opposite to what the other group (the Greeks won!) are saying. Plus, there are bets either way e.g. Bloomberg News: “Its too early to say who caved in to whom.” More>>

 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

Iraq: Ex-Hostage Says Government Not Putting NZers, Iraqis First

Harmeet Singh Sooden is travelling to Iraq in the coming weeks to work with Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) on a short-term assignment. More>>

ALSO:

Joint Statement: Australia-New Zealand Leaders’ Meeting

Prime Minister Key warmly welcomed Prime Minister Abbott and Mrs Abbott to New Zealand. The visit has enabled wide-ranging and substantive discussion that has underlined the strength, value, diversity and warmth of our trans-Tasman relationship. More>>

ALSO:

Press Conference: Peters To Stand In Northland By-Election

New Zealand First Leader Winston Peters has announced his intention to stand in the Northland by-election, citing his own links to the electorate and ongoing neglect of the region by central government. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Wage Hike For MPs (and Paul Robeson)

Hard to tell what is more infuriating. Is it the 5.3% increase on the already bloated salaries of MPs, or their pantomime of outrage at being gifted with such a wonderful back-dated bonanza? More>>

ALSO:

No Designers Or Visual Artists: Flag Panel Members Announced

The Government has appointed 12 New Zealanders as members of the Flag Consideration Panel which will engage with the public about a possible new New Zealand flag, Deputy Prime Minister Bill English says. More>>

ALSO:

Labour MP Stands Down From Portfolio: Comment From Carmel Sepuloni

The first I knew of my mother’s charges was when I was called by a reporter yesterday. I spoke to Andrew and we agreed there is a conflict of interest at the present time which means I will temporarily stand aside from the Social Development portfolio. It’s the right thing to do… . More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Whether NZ Troops Are The Least Of Islamic State’s Problems

Given that it has been politically packaged and sold as a training mission, the Iraq deployment announced yesterday by Prime Minister John Key seemed to be mysteriously short of actual trainers... The other wing of the argument is whether a troop deployment is (a) the only effective way and (b) the appropriate time to combat Islamic State. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news