Weapons not for the stocking

Travellers and online shoppers who think flick knives, knuckle dusters, daggers, stun guns, or pepper sprays make good presents, are warned they won't make it to the Christmas stocking.

New Zealand Customs Service says people should be aware they are buying prohibited or restricted items.

“Some of these goods can be easily bought in shops and markets overseas or on international websites, but people need to be aware that they are prohibited or restricted in New Zealand and we seize them at the border,” Customs group manager of investigations Bill Perry says in a statement.

Customs has already intercepted about 1300 offensive weapons including flick knives, knuckle dusters and daggers, and close to 200 restricted weapons such as stun guns and pepper sprays this year.

It is a common myth knives are allowed into the country as long as they are not in carry-on luggage - but this is not true, Mr Perry says.

Butterfly knives or flick knives which have blades which open automatically are illegal to import into New Zealand without a consent to import issued by NZ Police. This also applies to any knife that is designed to be easily concealed or has a double-edged blade designed or suitable for stabbing or throwing.

 Knuckle dusters, sword sticks, certain types of knives, or any weapon disguised to look like another article are prohibited from importation under the Customs Import Prohibition Order 2011 except with a consent to import issued by NZ Police.

Firearms, parts of firearms and restricted weapons such as mace, pepper sprays, stun guns, mines, grenades, and certain airguns are also subject to border controls under the Arms Act 1983. 

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