West Coast police have been cracking down on drug crime in the region over the past month, arresting a number of people.
A Hell’s Angels gang member was in possession of methamphetamine with a street value of more than $500,000 when he was arrested in Kumara last Friday.
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The 48-year-old Auckland patched member was also armed with a pistol, had ammunition and had cash in his possession when he was arrested.
Meanwhile, three people were arrested and charged with supplying methamphetamine after West Coast police conducted a number of search warrants yesterday.
Two women, aged 33 and 36, and a 34-year-old man appeared in Greymouth District Court on methamphetamine charges yesterday.
West Coast police had progressed on a number of investigations across the region on organised criminal activity, property offending and methamphetamine supply since late March.
Last week, a 41-year-old man with gang links was arrested in Reefton for possession of cannabis for supply. He also had a substantial amount of cash on his person at the time.
And a 36-year-old Westport woman was arrested and charged with possession and dealing methamphetamine, as well as driving charges, and was remanded in custody until June 30.
Illicit drug dealing, property offending, and weapon possession went hand-in-hand in causing harm to New Zealand communities, police said.
“Nationally, the Covid-19 pandemic has helped disrupt some of the established channels of methamphetamine supply, and West Coast Police have been working hard continuing to disrupt this supply even further,” police said.
“We are confident the arrests and seizures we have made have had an impact, and our work in this area will be ongoing.
“Our message to those who are struggling with an addiction to methamphetamine – please get help.”
In recent weeks, several Westport locals were charged with burglary and a number of Greymouth locals charged with receiving, in relation to a spate of commercial burglaries in Westport since February. Some of these people remained in custody.
Members of the public assisted the police greatly during the investigation.
Anyone with information on organised crime in their community was urged to contact police on 105 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.