A Kiwi pensioner is in a maximum security prison in Western Australia charged with importing cocaine.

The Australian Federal Police confirmed late yesterday the man had been charged with importing a marketable quantity of cocaine.

He will next appear in the Perth Magistrates court on April 1.

The Greymouth Star has chosen not to name the man until his court appearance. He is in his late 60s.


"As the matter is before the court we are not able to provide further information," Western Australian police said.

He is being held in Casuarina Prison, the state's main maximum-security prison for male prisoners.

The prison featured in the television documentary Australia's Hardest Prison: Lockdown Oz on the National Geographic channel in 2008.

The Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection referred questions about the arrest to police, and the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade said it had not been approached for consular assistance.

Friends spoken to by the Greymouth Star were in shock at his arrest.

- Greymouth Star