A significant Government milestone has been reached with $500 million in cash and assets seized from gangs and criminals by Police over the past four years, Police Minister Poto Williams announced today.
“During our last term in office, this target was set for 2021 with Police as part of our crackdown on gangs and crime. That work has continued in this term and it’s pleasing to see this target met,” Poto Williams said.
“Gangs should not be making money from exploiting our communities. This Government is very clear – we will not tolerate organised crime and gangs and we are working hard to disrupt them.
“New Zealanders have the right to feel safe in their homes and their communities. Actions like this will go a long way to making New Zealanders safer by making a significant dent in the illicit economy – which causes so much harm in our communities,” Poto Williams said.
“Today’s milestone furthers our commitment to hitting gangs where it hurts – their pockets. For every $1 seized, $3.30 of crime is disrupted, and for every $1 forfeited, $3.50 of crime is disrupted. Meaning that in the last four years alone, we have removed approximately $1.6 billion from the illicit economy.
“This is just one example of our action. We have already announced we will amend the Proceeds of Crime legislation so those involved in organised crime would have to demonstrate their assets were obtained through legitimate means or lose them
“And our investment in putting a record number of Police on the frontline with a specific focus on organised crime continues to pay off. Last week Police achieved their largest ever forfeiture under the Criminal Proceeds (Recovery) Act, when the High Court approved a settlement enabling the forfeiture of over $70 million,” Poto Williams said.