Two French tourists have been arrested in Motueka after admitting they made up a story about being robbed, police say.
A large number of police, including local officers, dog handlers, and investigators from Nelson, yesterday responded to a report the pair had been robbed.
However, after interviewing the tourists and investigating the scene, police said they established there had been no robbery.
They said the two 20-year-olds from France then admitted they made up the story.
The men have been arrested and charged with making a false statement.
Detective Senior Sergeant Craig Johnston said the incident had been a complete waste of police time.
"It is hugely disappointing to us to have wasted so many man hours responding to this fictitious call for help," said Mr Johnston.
"We take all matters of this nature very seriously and to find out this pair were not being truthful does not impress me at all.
"Genuine victims ultimately miss out when our resources are diverted in this way to what turned out to be a complete waste of police time."