A man who sparked outrage after he was accused of using an essential worker exemption to leave Auckland before flying to a family holiday home in Wānaka is the son of a high-ranking official.
The 35-year-old and his partner have not yet appeared in court on the charges.
They have hired Rachael Reed, a former president of the Auckland Women Lawyers' Association who was appointed to the rank of Queen's Counsel four years ago, to represent them. Reed has sought suppression of details about her clients.
Her clients have declined to comment on the matter, she said.
"This calculated and deliberate flouting of the alert level 4 restrictions is completely unacceptable and will be extremely upsetting to all those who are working hard and making great sacrifices in order to stamp out Covid in our community," police said in a media statement on Sunday.
Police said the couple reportedly crossed the alert level 4 boundary, after providing an exemption on Thursday September 9, drove to Hamilton Airport and boarded a commercial flight where they travelled to Queenstown via Wellington.
Once there, the couple rented a vehicle and drove to Wanaka.
Police said they were notified of the incident via the Covid-19 compliance online reporting tool and located the pair in Wanaka on Saturday afternoon.
After being spoken to by police the couple indicated they would return to their usual place of residence.
Police said Sunday that "the couple will be issued with a summons to appear in court in the coming week". In a media release today, they said they "are now considering charges under the Covid-19 Public Health Response Act 2020".
"Police are considering our enforcement options available to us and a decision on any charges has not been made at this stage," a spokesperson said when asked by the Herald for clarification.
Queenstown Lakes Mayor Jim Boult said in a statement on Monday that he has "no ongoing concerns for the health of folk in our district" after speaking with Government health officials.
But he characterised the allegations as "unbelievably selfish".
"It's astounding that this couple has felt they had the right to put each and every one in our district's communities at risk during a global pandemic so they could partake in skiing," he said in a statement to media. "Everyone has been working hard, many to the detriment of their financial and mental wellbeing, to do their bit to help stamp out Covid‐19 and this highly infectious Delta strain.
"It's simply not acceptable that a handful of people continue to flout the restrictions and think they do not apply to them. I ask those few to think of the risk they are placing on others and the risk they place on New Zealand being able to return to some sort of normality soon."