Police targeting organised crime in South

Police operations targeting gang crime in several Southern centres has resulted in 17 arrests and over 40 charges being laid.

"Since December 2019, more than 12 search warrants were executed at addresses throughout the district across Invercargill, Gore and Dunedin, with a clear focus on gang members."

Police recovered a significant amount of stolen goods including professional tools taken in burglaries, police said.

Seventeen people have been arrested and over 40 charges have been laid against them, they said.

"Those charges include possession of firearms, possession of class A controlled drugs, receiving stolen property and possession of methamphetamine.

"Four vehicles have also been impounded as a result of the warrants."

Police have revealed many of those arrested had "strong links to gangs and organised crime in the region".

Acting Southern District Commander Acting Superintendent Darryl Sweeney said this is an excellent result and only the beginning of our strategy to disrupt gangs and prevent our young people from joining. 

"It is a real priority of mine as District Commander to ensure that this is the safest place to live and to reduce the overall harm that organised crime and its members bring to families and our communities," he said.