Fighting organized crime in New Zealand
New Zealand is an island country in the southwestern Pacific Ocean. It is made up of two principle islands and more than 600 smaller islands. The nearest neighbouring country is 1,000 km away. This remoteness is attractive to organized crime groups wishing to engage in discreet trafficking of illegal merchandise between continents.
In addition, New Zealand’s developed economy, high quality of life and economic freedom make the country attractive to criminal networks seeking new markets. Consequently, New Zealand’s principal transnational crime challenges include trafficking in drugs, people and weapons. Associated crime include money laundering and cybercrime.
The international characteristics of these crime areas and their links with crime networks around the world make the role of the INTERPOL National Central Bureau (NCB) in New Zealand fundamental to maintaining national and regional security.
INTERPOL in New Zealand
New Zealand’s NCB is part of the International Services Group at the national police headquarters. The Commissioner of Police is the Head of NCB.
By providing globally-sourced intelligence about regional crime trends, the NCB helps police officers across New Zealand detect and investigate the flow of illicit goods along trafficking routes in and around the country.
NCB Wellington is a regular partner in INTERPOL-led global police operations in the region.
Law enforcement in New Zealand
National law enforcement services are provided by the New Zealand police which is responsible for community safety, criminal investigations, national security, emergency management and crime reduction and community safety.
It provides policing services 24 hours a day and operates from more than 400 community-based police stations around the country. The New Zealand Police operates by land, sea and air and – with more than 11,000 staff – responds to more than 600,000 emergency calls each year.
The Commissioner of Police is appointed by the Governor General and is accountable to the Minister of Police for the administration of police services, whilst acting independently in carrying out law enforcement decisions.
Nationally, the New Zealand Police has 12 Districts, which are administered from the Police national headquarters in Wellington. A number of national service centres provide administrative and specialized support nationwide.