Police warn of gang disruptions between Auckland, Foxton amid Head Hunter William Hines' funeral

Story by RNZ

Police have warned of disruptions between Auckland and Foxton as gang members hold a funeral for a senior member, and say officers will be targeting illegal behaviour.

William 'Bird' Hines was a prominent leader in the Head Hunters. In 2017 he was sentenced to more than 18 years prison for manufacturing and supplying methamphetamine and for firearms offences.

Police said they will monitor gang movements associated with Hines funeral, but warned motorists to expect delays on the roads during the coming days.

Assistant Commissioner Mike Johnson said additional resources were being called in "to target illegal behaviour and to mitigate disruption to the public as much as possible".

"Police anticipate these movements to be between Auckland and Foxton. It is also anticipated that other groups will head north to Foxton from southern regions."

Officers had been working with "various parties" to lay down their expectations for behaviour during this time, including for those on the roads, Johnson said.

"Police will have increased staff deployed on the roading network across these regions, and we anticipate checkpoints to be established in some areas to ensure those taking part are adhering to the law.

"Our expectations are very clear around no tolerance for unlawful activity that puts the wider community at risk. Police will take enforcement action where necessary and provided it is safe to do so."

Three people were arrested and vehicles seized during the funeral of a Head Hunters gang member in Auckland in August.

Johnson said anyone worried for their safety, or who sees anything illegal should call police.