Viliami Mangisi

The drug dealer who attempted to export 1.9 kilograms of methamphetamine to New Zealand was found guilty and will be sentenced next week.  

Viliami Mangisi, 59, was convicted of  two counts relating to the seizure of the methamphetamine in May 2018.

The Tongan-US passport holder attempted to export the drugs from Tonga to New Zealand. Police said the meth had an estimated street value of around $2 million pa’anga.

The court heard Mangisi arranged with an airport cleaner, Samuela Fonua, to smuggle the illicit drugs into the airport and conceal it at the departure lounge. Mangisi would pick it up later on his way to the plane.

The plan was unfolded after a shift leader at the airport spotted Fonua acting suspiciously at the entrance to the security area, the court was told.

Asked what he was doing Fonua told the woman it was something for Mangisi to come and pick up later.

The shift leader reported the incident to the manager and police were called.

Police arrived and Fonua was arrested and interviewed. The court was told Police advised Fonua to go ahead with the plan so they can have a chance to arrest Mangisi.

Fonua pleaded guilty while Mangisi pleaded not guilty.

Mangisi will be sentenced on November 15 after he was convicted by jury.

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