Police didn't search the Auckland property where Cindy Li was found until 12 days after she was missing, despite scouring her neighbourhood for her.
Li, 70, was reported missing from her home on Tranmere Rd, Sandringham, on November 9. She was found 12 days later in a property nearby "extremely dehydrated" and rushed to hospital in a critical condition.
Officers said an extensive search was conducted, and Detective Senior Sergeant Geoff Baber, of Auckland City West CIB, said at the time police had serious concerns for her safety given the length of time she had been missing.
Just before noon on Saturday November 20, police and forensic experts were seen at the block of units where Li lived with her husband. It was announced that evening that Li had been found alive.
Police did not say exactly where Li was found, but a neighbour told the Herald it was in the garage of a unit not far from where they lived.
Police say the house where Li was located was unoccupied by its owner but was "secured" during the time she was missing.
"The first time it was searched by police was when she was located," police said in a statement today.
"As previously stated we do not believe foul play was involved and this view remains unchanged.
"Her health and wellbeing remains a priority for police and for privacy reasons we will not be commenting further at this time," police said.
Police said Li remains in hospital in a critical but stable condition.
Li and her husband Guo Hong Feng own the Great Wall Health Centre on Karangahape Rd.
Feng did answer the door when the Herald visited the couple's home this week.
He did not wish to talk to the media, police said.