Fijian air passenger fined for attempting to take foreign plants and seeds into NZ

Fijian air passenger fined for attempting to take foreign plants and seeds into NZ

By Dhanjay Deo
Friday 19/01/2018
The passenger was fined more than $2000 for trying to smuggle vegetation into NZ [Photo:]

A Fijian air passenger tagged as a smuggler has been fined more than $2,000 for attempting to take foreign plants and seeds into New Zealand.

During his court appearance, Deo Rajan Gounder, a New Zealand resident, said he knew what he was doing was illegal, but did it anyway because his cousin talked him into it.

Gounder pleaded guilty at the Manukau District Court on Wednesday to trying to bring the vegetation ‑ four plants and 11 seeds ‑ into Auckland Airport in July last year.

Biosecurity officers found the plant material at the bottom of a chilly bin containing food.

Two of the cuttings were Neem plants, or Indian lilac, a fast‑growing tree that can grow up to 20 metres in height. The other plants were unidentified.

New Zealand’s Primary Industries says in the past, they have detected crazy ants, taro mite, scale insects, and fungal diseases in plants from Fiji.


Latest Videos

Stay tuned for the latest news on our radio stations

CFL radio frequencies
RKS and Tailevu North retains Tailevu Zone title
RKS won the boys division with 25 gold, 21 silver and 24 bronze. Tailevu North College took out the girls title with 33 gold, 17 silver and 9 bronze ...
4 days ago

Grammar wins Suva Zone 2 girls and boys title
Suva Grammar School have taken out the boys and girls division titles of the Coca-Cola Suva Zone 2 athletics meet. The Grammar boys finished with 28 gold, 24 silver and 15 bronze.
15 days ago

Words matter, especially from a Minister - DPP
Words matter, especially from a Minister, and these words were inappropriate according to the Director of Public Prosecutions Christopher Pryde while ...
16 days ago
Those Fijians in NZ choose to look to the Rabuka of now and are uniting with me in the upcoming election - Rabuka
It was a relief to have been able to stop for a moment and dance with women whose parents may have been affected by the events of 1987. Those are t...
18 hours ago
AG’s Office obtains leave to bring committal proceedings against Richard Naidu
The Attorney-General’s Office says they have obtained leave to bring committal proceedings against Richard Naidu in respect of a Facebook post ...
31 minutes ago

Fijians will see an extraordinary grand aarti at the Shree Jagnath Rath Yatra program in Lami today - Prasad
Satsang Ramayan Mandali youths will perform a extraordinary choreographed aarti at the C J Patel car-park in Lami today to celebrate Shree Jagnath ...
3 hours ago

1 new COVID death with 158 new cases
An 89-year-old unvaccinated woman with pre-existing comorbidities passed away from COVID-19 earlier this week. The Health Ministry says she was ...
4 hours ago

Former SG, Sharvada Sharma appointed as USP’s Director of Professional Legal Training Programme
Former Solicitor-General, Sharvada Sharma has been appointed as the University of the South Pacific’s Director of Professional Legal Training ...
17 hours ago

People can soon find their polling venue after the launch of the Polling Venue Directory
You will soon be able to identify where you will be casting your votes in the upcoming general election as the Fijian Elections Office has launched ...
17 hours ago