Approximately $2 million of cocaine has washed up on a New Zealand beach in a bunch of parcels that look like they’re part of a Survivor challenge.
The mysterious packages washed up on Bethells Beach in Auckland on Wednesday, where locals alerted police. About 20 packages were found in total. That’s a lot of cocaine.
“There is a small possibility that further packages may turn up on the beach and we ask any members of the public to contact us immediately if they do,” Detective Inspector Colin Parmenter of Waitematä police said in a statement.
Local resident Leah Macfadyen was disappointed to hear that the look was a big ol’ pile of coke and not champagne, initially being told by a neighbour that packages had the Dom Perignon logo on them.
“I was thinking, ‘Is this champagne that we should all be running down the beach to get some? But no, turns out it was only drugs….Boring, not for me,” she said.
Yep, just a boring pile of $2 million worth of coke. Not Leah’s cup of tea, apparently.
According to Jose Sousa-Santos, a Pacific crime researcher at Massey University, the packages look to have originated from Colombia or Peru. Cocaine can be purchased there for around $7,000USD, but will re-sell for about $250,000 in New Zealand.
“There is a huge mark-up and quite a big margin of profit to be made by these syndicates. So, they can definitely afford to lose consignments to the tune of $3 million,” Jose said.
Police believe the loot may have been bound for Australia and tossed overboard last year when Border Patrol intercepted a vessel off the coast of New South Wales.
The markings on the Auckland packages seem to match the parcels that were recovered from last year’s interception, thus leading police to believe they could’ve been from the same shipment.
“The product found on Bethells Beach appears to have been part of this same shipment and has drifted here over the last year, as the markings and packaging of the drugs is consistent with that seized in Australia,” NZ police said in a statement.
Police have urged anyone who locates one of these blue packages to report it to authorities immediately.Image: New Zealand Police