23 Jun 2011

Iranian accused of importing drugs a 'refugee'

4:43 pm on 23 June 2011

The lawyer for an Auckland man accused of importing drugs for an Iranian organised crime ring says his client is a refugee.

Yashar Ghasemi is charged with bringing methamphetamine into the country, supplying a class A drug, conspiring to import drugs and participating in the criminal group.

He was expected to appear in Auckland District Court on Thursday.

Mr Ghasemi's lawyer, Lester Cordwell, says he will ask for an adjournment because his client, who is from Iran, has nowhere to be bailed to.

He says a lease Mr Ghasemi has on a property ends at the end of this month.

A police operation to crack the ring netted almost 2.4kg of methamphetamine with a street value of almost $2.4 million.

The police say the drug was imported from Iran by the syndicate.