A beach walker’s dog seemed to be marking its territory after it peed on US$3-million worth of cocaine that washed up on an Auckland beach on Wednesday.
Around 4:30 p.m. local time, the unidentified woman stumbled upon 19 bags of cocaine at Bethells Beach. Police later estimated the findings to be worth approximately US$3 million at street value, according to the New Zealand Police’s Facebook page.
The drugs appeared to have been in the ocean for quite some time, as they were covered in dirt and seashells and wrapped in netting.
Speaking to Stuff, the woman said she was walking her two dogs when she saw a “strange shaped thing” on the shoreline.
Shortly after, she called the police and said officials tested the packages, which came back positive for cocaine.
“They peed on $3-million worth of drugs,” she said. “They tried to mark it as theirs.”
It’s certainly not something most people find during a casual walk on the shore.
“It was not what I was expecting to find on the beach, that’s for sure. I was looking for seaweed,” she remarked, adding that she hopes no one comes searching for more drugs, which would disturb native birds in the area.
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“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,” the New Zealand Police wrote in a statement.
According to the Kiwi publication, legal experts warn that those who plan to look for more product could be prosecuted.
“Our inquiries are ongoing to identify where these drugs have come from,” Inspector Parmenter said, adding that officials would continue a wider search of the area starting Thursday.
The police force’s Facebook post regarding the confiscated drugs has received hundreds of comments and 1,100 reactions from the public.
One user wrote: “Wow I’m pleased that was found before it got into the wrong hands.”
Others criticized the open police approach to the situation.
“The police are saying that bundles worth $158,000 each are washing up on the beach free to anyone who finds them. That’s probably not something I would of made public. Good job NZ Police.”
“3mil is a lot of money, the poor person was probably just trying to make some money for their family,” another commented.
Some took a more lighthearted approach to the situation.
Another did a bit of comedic math, commenting: “20 found by member of public, 19 given to police, 16 made it to the station, 14 made it to testing, 12 items presented in court, 11 items returned to the station, for an investigation into how 8 bags of cocaine were found on the beach.”
One person had a laugh at a radio broadcast regarding the findings, commenting: “Had to laugh when they said on the radio that volunteers had turned up to help search for more.”