Druggies on notice after bust

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Queenstown’s recreational drug users can expect police to come knocking after a major bust of an international drug syndicate yesterday.

Eight men – four living in Queenstown – were arrested on a variety of charges relating to importing, selling and supplying ecstasy and LSD in New Zealand, Australia, Bali and Vancouver, Canada.

The sophisticated drug ring was driven from Queenstown, detective sergeant Grahme Bartlett says.

“We were quite astounded. While this is portrayed as a party town and people talk of access to drugs we were surprised at the level of the drugs these people were importing.

“There’ll be a large number of people in the Queenstown community who will be concerned about the follow-up enquiries we’re about to make.”

The men, in their 30s, appear in Invercargill, Christchurch and Dunedin courts today. Another appeared in Oamaru District Court yesterday.

Bartlett credited NZ Customs, Queenstown’s Criminal Intelligence Unit and his staff for their work in the three-month investigation.