Kiwis' brushes with New Zealand's dark underbelly

  • 12/06/2017

It's often claimed New Zealand has a massive problem with gangs and methamphetamine. But reports of drug busts and arrests aside, many of us have never had a close encounter with either.

Reddit user kouroshf7 wanted to find out what it's really like to brush up against the Kiwi underbelly.

"New Zealand is such a beautiful nation but our underworld has a dark, dark history," they wrote on the New Zealand section of the popular web forum.

"Despite the safety New Zealand provides I have heard some horrifying stories majority of them involving gangs and meth. I'm curious to hear other people's crazy stories involving meth and gangs."

Many of the responses involved marijuana, unsurprisingly.

"A good ten or fifteen years ago I lived around the corner from one of the more well-known tinny houses in Hamilton," replied EuphoricMilk.

"One night I head over there, knock on the door, no answer, hang around a bit because the light was on, then as I am leaving this huge dude in a dayglow approaches me, 'You looking for a score bro?'"

After handing over his cash, a "couple of chicks" told him he wouldn't get his money back. But they were wrong - the patched Mongrel Mob member handing over massive wad of the "the nicest, smelliest, skunk".

"I know this isn't a scary encounter (although I was scared!) ... but it is my only drug/gang related story."

Another Reddit user Qweqwepoi said they love "smoking tons of green", but once found themselves at a P-head's house.

"It was pretty late and I could see this guy was cooking some dinner on the stove. I was making small talk and asked him what he was making - he told me he was whipping up some spag bol. Nice one, Kiwi classic.

"I walked into the kitchen to have a little peek. The guy had a saucepan on the gas element, which had been on for quite a while, filled with dry spaghetti - and no water. He was trying to boil his spaghetti in air.

"At that point I calmly told my friends that I was out...Pretty tame story, but there you go."

Ferndale_strangler, on the other hand, is in so deep they had to resort to making a list.

"Someone getting held over a multistory balcony over deals; Guys getting into debt so they have to pay their loan off by stealing cars. Got caught went to jail; Leaving $20k worth of drugs in hotel room; Gang members raiding houses; Getting cars taken off them for debts; Girl getting passed around for debts."

The list concluded rather ominously: "etc".

Meth - 'expensive'.
Meth - 'expensive'. Photo credit: iStock

Thatguyonirc said he once found a "pointer bag" of meth in a work bathroom.

"A guy with a fake leg had apparently left it behind; he told me it was 'expensive' so I immediately knew what it was."

Drugsl*t's experience wasn't so benign, more like something out of Breaking Bad than Outrageous Fortune.

"[A] friend.. learnt to cook meth and then got kidnapped by the gang whenever they felt they wanted to borrow his skills. Got stuck with them doing that until he eventually blew up the lab and went to jail."

Derp07 once lived next to a "drug house", but it wasn't so bad.

"They were good neighbours, relatively quiet, though they did have random people showing up every 15 min (which was a bit concerning).

"Overall though, living next to a rowdy student flat had a greater effect on my life."

The most popular comment in the thread however went to happiestJ.

"When I was young in the '80s I saw a patched and tattooed Mongrel Mob member approach a Mr Whippy icecream truck.

"He then proceeded to purchase and pay for an icecream."

Ice cream van
Ice cream - popular with gangs as well as children. Photo credit: Getty

Terrifying stuff.

Note: Newshub cannot verify if any of the stories are true, as the vast majority of Reddit users post anonymously.