Arrests Made After Two Men Attempt to Smuggle Kentucky Fried Chicken, Lead Police on Car Chase

by Matthew Memrick

Two New Zealand men tried to sell Kentucky Fried Chicken food items to sell despite strict lockdown rules, but police caught them after a car chase.

Can you imagine the lengths people go for their chicken on a Sunday? (Hint, hint Chick-fil-A)

The men attempted to enter Auckland, where Kentucky Fried Chicken stores were closed. According to CNN, the two men, ages 23 and 30, had gang ties.

Kentucky Fried Chicken Haul

According to Yahoo! News, the men had at least three buckets of chicken, 10 cups of coleslaw, fries, and four other bags of Kentucky Fried Chicken items, according to local police. They allegedly carried all that in their car for a 75-mile trip from Auckland to Hamilton. 

With that long of a drive, how could that much food still be in the car, right?

When the men saw a police car, “the vehicle did a u-turn and sped off trying to evade police,” local authorities said.

After stopping the car, the police had an eye-opening experience with all the food. The BBC also reported that cash (equivalent to $70,000 in American dollars), empty drug paraphernalia bags, and “a large amount of (Kentucky Fried Chicken) takeaways” were in the car.

Police have not been able to determine if the pair was hungry or would resell the fast food.

Why the Lockdown

Amid the pandemic, the South Pacific island nation has put together some of the strongest laws to keep COVID-19 out.

The capital city of Auckland had a Level-4 lockdown, meaning that all eateries and takeaway services (Doordash, etc.) are closed to the public. The rest of the country, however, is at Level 2. This level of lockdown means that restaurants, cafes, bars, and nightclubs are open, and residents can leave their homes.

According to the law, the men could be fined roughly $3,000 and face a six-month prison sentence for their Kentucky Fried Chicken fast-food hijinks. 

CNN also reported that the country would move its threat level down to a Level 3 this week and let citizens make “permitted movement” to workplaces and schools.

A 2018 census listed New Zealand with 4,699,755 residents. During the pandemic, the country has reported more than 4,800 COVID-19 cases and 27 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University data. 

Australia Had Restrictions, Too

Nearby Australia was also forcing businesses to close amid the pandemic conditions.

According to PopCulture, Sydney and its state of New South Wales had gone through eight weeks of lockdowns.

Then, the Kentucky Fried Chicken outbreak happened at one location.

In late August, one KFC restaurant had 12 workers test positive for COVID-19 despite Sydney’s lockdown. At the time, many fast-food restaurants were essential and allowed to operate. But the outbreak forced many to re-evaluate how “essential” these businesses were during the health crisis.