A Tauranga businessman and his daughter have appeared in court on serious drugs charges following an armed police raid yesterday.

Gary Read - who legally manufactured party pills containing the chemical BZP before opening a 24-hour cafe in Tauranga - appeared in Tauranga District Court today facing drugs charges of including possessing the drug ephredrine and methamphetamine for supply and importing a Class B drug into the country.

The 44-year-old's daughter Kahsharn Read, 24, faces related charges including conspiring to import ephedrine.

A third defendant, 28-year-old Jade Brady, has been charged with possession of methamphetamine and cannabis.


The three were arrested as part of a joint investigation also involving Customs and the Organised and Financial Crime Agency of New Zealand, which culminated with an armed offenders squad raid in Tauranga yesterday afternoon.

About 200gms of methamphetamine with a street value of $100,000 was recovered along with 1.5kg of ephredrine, its precursor chemical, in what police now suspect to be part of an international drug ring.

The court heard how another parcel has been intercepted in Auckland, however their lawyer, Paul Mabey, questioned whether Read was involved.

OFCANZ Detective Inspector Grant Wormald said the arrests came as the direct result of ongoing investigations which lead to the importation being identified by Customs.

Judge Thomas Ingram remanded Gary Reid in custody to next appear on Monday.
His daughter and Brady have been released on bail with night time curfews until October 19.