Police investigating 'highly distressing' YouTube video threatening violence against Māori

The video has since been taken offline.
The video has since been taken offline. Photo credit: Getty Images

An investigation has been launched after a "highly distressing" video containing hate speech and threats against Māori was posted to YouTube. 

The video was uploaded to YouTube on Sunday night but was taken down after the Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) got involved.

Police confirmed an investigation has been launched, with a spokesperson saying they are "following strong lines of enquiry". 

Jaren Mullen, director of digital safety at the Department of Internal Affairs (DIA), said the video was removed by YouTube on Monday morning and "could well be objectionable".

"We have referred a copy of the video to the Chief Censor for classification," Mullen said on Friday.

"Once the video has been classified the department will coordinate with police to consider any further action that may be appropriate."

Mullen warned that making, sharing or holding objectionable material is an offence under the Films, Video, Publication and Classifications Act.

He said the DIA would not be making any further comment on the matter as it was now the subject of an ongoing police investigation.

The contents of the video were described as "highly distressing" in a statement from the DIA to the NZ Herald.