Kidnapped explorer returns to New Zealand

- Posted in New Zealand by Dominicon 15 November 2012

Kiwi Busby Nobel accidentally
ended up travelling to one of the
most dangeorous places on Earth

Earlier this year we covered the story of a Kiwi man apparently accidently abducted by the notoriously reckless Norwegian explorer Jarle Andhoy on his way to the Antarctic.

Back in January, Jarle Andhoy, famed for his ill equipped and overly ambitious treks to some of the most uninhabitable places on Earth, was about to embark on his latest trip to the Antarctic. However, when government officials discovered Andhoy had recently been deported from Canada, they cancelled the Norwegian national's New Zealand visa.

On hearing New Zealand immigration officials were on their way, Andhoy rushed to the harbour and set off out on his exhibition early, clearly thinking he had escaped punishment. However, it transpired 52-year-old yacht mechanic and local resident Busby Noble was still on board.

Andhoy, already known to the authorities for his blatant disregard for international laws, was monitored even more closely when it transpired a New Zealander with no proper winter clothing was on board and heading for the South Pole.

New Zealand Foreign Minister Murray McCully said at the time "the Southern Ocean is one of the most remote and inhospitable areas in the world. New Zealand government agencies are obviously concerned".

However, Andhoy insisted that having the Kiwi on board was "a somewhat tricky situation" but that "everything is on schedule and the atmosphere is good on board" and that he planned to continue his trek.

Ten months on following a turbulent trip around the Southern Ocean and a visit to Antarctica, Mr Noble returned to Norway with Andhoy to become an overnight celebrity. Eventually even Mr Noble's partner TP Teiho flew to be with him as he appeared on chat shows and gave interviews about the ad hoc adventure.

Mr Noble has since returned to New Zealand this week and, despite saying he 'expected a grilling' from New Zealand immigration authorities, wrote on his Facebook page 'Home again! Safe and sound. Aotearoa.' having apparently passed through Immigration New Zealand checks without a problem.

While Mr Noble did not state whether he planned for any more immediate adventures, it's likely he's just glad to be home.

- Dominic Ladden-Powell is the Online Editor for the New Zealand Visa Bureau.