Senior gang leaders arrested after raids

Police made 26 arrests and seized drugs and cash as part of Operation Cincinnati in October....
Police made 26 arrests and seized drugs and cash as part of Operation Cincinnati in October. Photo: Supplied
Senior leaders of the Comancheros and Rebels gangs have been arrested and hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash seized following a raft of armed police raids across Auckland and Christchurch.

Police have arrested 12 more people today as part of Operation Cincinnati and located drugs, some of which was ready for sale, and a shotgun after executing 24 search warrants

Police searched 21 properties across Auckland and three in Christchurch.

New Zealand Customs staff, Armed Offenders Squad members, Asset Recovery Unit and Police Dog Section staff assisted police with the searches.

It follows the first phase of Operation Cincinnati in October when 26 people were arrested and kilos of drugs was seized, along with multiple firearms and more than $10 million in assets.

Police said the nine-month investigation, run by the National Organised Crime Group, targeted a core group that are alleged to be involved in the importation, distribution and manufacture of methamphetamine and MDMA, and other drugs in the two cities.

Those arrested today, aged between 20 and 42, will appear in the Auckland District Court in the...
Those arrested today, aged between 20 and 42, will appear in the Auckland District Court in the coming days. Photo: Supplied
Today's arrests include a leader of the Comancheros gang, who allegedly formed a partnership with a senior member of the Rebels gang in Christchurch, with both allegedly running drug distribution networks in their areas, police said in a statement.

A further 10 gang members and their associates have also been arrested in relation to their alleged roles in the network, which saw drugs and cash transported between the two cities, police said.

National Organised Crime Group acting Detective Inspector John Brunton said police were determined to target the leaders and key members of these "criminal gangs" involved in illicit drug distribution, intimidation and violence.

"We want to reduce the harm these gangs are causing in our communities," he said.

"I also want to acknowledge the great work carried out by the Operation Cincinnati team, who are committed to preventing organised crime of any sort impacting on our communities."

Those arrested today are aged between 20 and 42 and will appear in Auckland District Court in the coming days on various drugs-related charges.

 

 

 

 

Our journalists are your neighbours

We are the South's eyes and ears in crucial council meetings, at court hearings, on the sidelines of sporting events and on the frontline of breaking news.

As our region faces uncharted waters in the wake of a global pandemic, Otago Daily Times continues to bring you local stories that matter.

We employ local journalists and photographers to tell your stories, as other outlets cut local coverage in favour of stories told out of Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

You can help us continue to bring you local news you can trust by becoming a supporter.

Become a Supporter