Interpol officer's exclusive interview with Newshub after woman arrested over Manurewa suitcase homicides

"It's a very terrible crime."

Those are the words of an Interpol officer describing the deaths of two children whose bodies were found in suitcases in Manurewa.

A woman has been taken into custody in South Korea after the Korean Ministry of Justice received a request from New Zealand for her provisional arrest in connection with the death of the children.

She says she's innocent, but she's now awaiting a court hearing in Seoul about extradition to Aotearoa.

She told Korean reporters as she was bundled into a car: "I didn't do it."

The woman was led from the Ulsan Police station just hours after she was arrested.

It was a major development almost 10,000 kilometres away from the south Auckland suburb of Manurewa where the children's bodies were first discovered in suitcases.

Newshub spoke exclusively to an Interpol officer coordinating the effort between New Zealand and Korean police, he said the arrest was the result of a late-night stakeout.

"The detective who apprehended her today tracked the CCTV around the Ulsan City… she was hiding in front of the apartment where she lived."

He told Newshub local police got a tip-off about the woman's location, so an undercover police officer hid until they received confirmation of her identity and the green light for an arrest.

"We found out that she was in that apartment at that time and after we were confirmed that she is in that place, we just went there and arrested her."

He said the collaboration work with Aoteaora's officials played an important role in arresting the woman.

"They gave us crucial information very quickly. So it was very good. It was [a] very good experience for us cooperating with New Zealand."

The woman was arrested around 1am (local time) in the city of Ulsan. She has now been transported 300km to the capital Seoul, where she awaits an extradition hearing.

"There will be a court to determine whether Korea would send her back to New Zealand or not."

Although the woman has professed her innocence to media in Korea, it could be some time before she can make a similar statement to a court in Aotearoa.

Officials were unable to tell Newshub how long the extradition process will take.

It's been an emotional time for Korean Kiwis, they are upset by the woman's words and are asking "if she didn't do it, why was she hiding her face?".

"It's unbelievable sad it happened to kids, the whole Korean community has the same feeling," said Korea NZ cultural association co-president Diane Lee.

"The crime is indeed very bad… It's [a] very terrible crime," the Interpol officer added.

"I think all countries in the world, including Korea and New Zealand, we agree that we should check down the suspect as soon as possible."

The woman is now in the custody of the Seoul Prosecutor's Office, awaiting the prospect of returning to New Zealand where she'll get an official chance to claim her innocence.