A woman linked to human trafficking in New Zealand has been arrested in Fiji.

The 31-year-old Fijian citizen was arrested in Suva on Thursday and charged by the Fiji Police with serious crimes including human trafficking.

She appeared in the Suva Magistrate Court on Saturday.

The woman allegedly organised and facilitated the travel and work arrangements for a number of Fijian victims who arrived in NZ and were subsequently heavily exploited.


The joint investigation involving both Immigration New Zealand and Fijian authorities relates to New Zealand's first successful human trafficking prosecution against Faroz Ali in 2016.

Ali was sentenced at the High Court in Auckland to a total of nine years and six months' imprisonment after being found guilty of 15 human trafficking and other immigration-related offences.

"New Zealand is committed to eliminating people trafficking and will work closely with offshore authorities when the need arises," INZ assistant general manager Peter Devoy said.

"The excellent work completed by INZ staff and our Fijian colleagues has allowed for these charges to be brought by the Fiji Police. I hope the victims can take some comfort from this fact."

Devoy said the agency was not able to make any further comments as the matter was now before the Fijian courts.

Human trafficking, which is the movement, deception or coercion of people for the purposes of exploitation, is the second largest illicit crime in the world.

It became a major target for INZ in 2014, when new policies were introduced and the Crimes Act was amended.

INZ, and not the police, investigates human trafficking cases in New Zealand.


Devoy said the agency had a significant amount of work in place to educate and empower migrant workers and their employers to understand and act on their rights and obligations.

Specialist guides for migrant workers and employers have been developed with information on minimum employment rights, health and safety, improving workplace communications and where to go for further settlement support.

Anyone with concerns about human trafficking or exploitation should contact INZ on 0508 558855, the Labour Inspectorate on 0800 209020 or CrimeStoppers anonymously.