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Hong Kong visitor jailed for ‘P’ stuffed statues

Hong Kong visitor jailed for ‘P’ stuffed statues

A 25-year-old Hong Kong visitor was today sentenced in the Auckland District Court to 10 years’ imprisonment after Customs linked her to methamphetamine or ‘P’ hidden in imported statues.

Ka Po Ching will have to serve at least four years minimum parole before being deported.

On 3 January 2014, a foot-high Chinese warrior statue in a glass case arrived by courier from Hong Kong. The glass case did not save it from closer inspection by Customs officers who found 993g of methamphetamine, with a street value of around one million dollars hidden inside.

Customs Manager Investigations Maurice O’Brien says criminals are creative in their attempts to bring drugs into the country but Customs will not be deterred by elaborate presentation and delivery methods.

Customs investigations linked the package to Ching who had arrived in New Zealand on 27 December, just a week before the statue arrived. She was later linked to other similar importations. Customs arrested her at a central city apartment she was renting.

Mr O’Brien says it’s not uncommon for syndicates to recruit young people from overseas and pay for them to travel to and reside in New Zealand solely to ‘catch’ and redeliver illicit drugs.

“The public should be aware that such criminals could be renting properties or apartments solely to have packages delivered to that address, or asking others to receive a package on their behalf.

To report suspected behaviours or concerns, call Customs on 0800 4 CUSTOMS (0800 428 786).


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