One of the United States top law officers is in New Zealand.

FBI head James Comey slipped into the country and has been meeting with the Attorney General Chris Finlayson and with the Commissioner of Police.

American sources say he's here as part of ongoing meetings over security in the region.

Mr Comey was appointed to the job by President Obama late in 2013.

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The US Embassy in Wellington said he was in New Zealand to discuss "a host of important issues regarding the safety and security of the citizens of both countries".

"The US-New Zealand law enforcement partnership remains steadfast, and we welcome the opportunity to work together to share critical information that will safeguard our
Americans and New Zealanders from global threats," the embassy said.

Mr Comey was photographed with Police Minister Judith Collins and Police Commissioner Mike Bush.

The Trans Tasman political alert reports he's been laying the ground work for a visit by President Barack Obama.

Prime Minister John Key has had a standing invitation to Obama to visit New Zealand and it's understood the President has indicated he'd like to do that in his final year in office.

The last president to visit here was Bill Clinton who came here for the APEC conference in Auckland in 1999.