New Customs Service dogs and handlers complete training
Two new Customs Service drug dogs and handlers are today graduating from their training course at the Police Dog
Training school at Trentham.
Customs officers Kathy Riordan and Maximus and Edwina Hopwood and Penny joined Customs Drug Dog Unit in August and have
just completed their basic training.
Customs Minister Rick Barker congratulated the new teams on their graduation.
“The drug dogs and handlers are an important link in the chain of protection of the New Zealand community.
“Customs dogs are trained to detect all illicit drugs, and have a good success rate identifying amphetamines, ecstasy,
cocaine and marijuana,” Mr Barker said.
Drug dogs are one of several detection tools available to Customs, alongside technology such as x-ray machines and ion
scanners, to assist in identifying people, luggage or cargo shipments that warrant closer investigation by officers.
“I am delighted to see these two new handlers and dogs joining Customs operational team,” Mr Barker said.
Customs now has 12 drug dogs and handlers who operate at all points of entry for people, goods and mail around New