Stuff.co.nz - 01/12/2011
Les Watkins, who co-wrote the biography Fred The Needle, sent two copies of the book to Benidorm in Spain for his younger brother Gareth in September.
Caralise Moore/Rodney Times
A book about legendary All Black coach Sir Fred Allen has been seized by Spanish customs officers because of apparent drug references.
"Apparently, the authorities there have clamped down on books believed to contain pornography or other undesirable material," Watkins said.
"As far as we can work out, they pounced on the word 'needle' in the title, assuming it must be somehow linked to drugs being injected."
Gareth has been trying to convince the Spanish authorities that neither his New Zealand brother nor Sir Fred Allen are drug users or peddlers.
The books were first returned to New Zealand in early November with a bill for return postage.
On November 10 Watkins tried again, spending another $70 to resend the books. They were due to arrive within 10 days.
By November 28 the books still had not arrived, but NZ Post tracked the books to the Spanish customs department, where they had been impounded.
Watkins says the exercise cost him $128.98, but NZ Post has reimbursed him.
"I can't speak highly enough of the courtesy and efficiency of NZ Post.
"With any luck, he might get the books by Christmas."
- Rodney Times