Police warn of gang funeral disruptions as Head Hunters head down North Island


Police expect a procession of Head Hunters gang members travelling from Auckland to a senior member's funeral to arrive in Foxton around 7pm tonight.

Speaking to reporters, Assistant Commissioner Mike Johnson said so far the gang procession's behaviour "has been reasonably good".

He said the size of the convoy has waxed and waned with 50 or 60 bikes leaving Auckland, then swelled by other gangs joining and dropping off, peaking at one point at around 100 bikes.

He said more than 100 police have been monitoring the procession, backed by the helicopter Eagle.

"The Foxton community will see an increase in police staff," he said.

The bike procession is travelling for the funeral of William "Bird" Hines, a prominent leader of the gang.

Earlier, infingement notices were handed out and one person failed a breath test as police monitored the convoy.

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.

Around midday on Saturday, Johnson said: "A large number of police were deployed to the checkpoints prior to the group leaving Auckland.

"Several infringement notices were issued and one person failed an alcohol breath screening test."

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.