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Characterised by variety and independence, the Naval Police (NP) role could see you: preventing crime on Navy Ships or Defence Areas within New Zealand, being part of an investigations team offshore, acting as a bodyguard to senior military officers overseas, training foreign police or security forces, and more.

  • Service
  • Specialisation
  • Location
  • Starting Trade Training
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About the role

As Naval Police (NP), your job is to protect the Defence Force’s people and resources from crime and keep them safe in New Zealand and overseas. You will work alongside colleagues in the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) Police and New Zealand Army’s Military Police as a highly trained specialist, providing police expertise to the Royal New Zealand Navy (RNZN) and Defence Force community, in a variety of deployed environments.

You will need to be highly motivated and trustworthy, as you will often be the one in control at incidents. Your attention to detail and ability to adapt under pressure will be required whether you’re investigating crimes or providing close protection in high-risk situations. High standards of behaviour are expected of an NP at all times. 

Job on base

You will spend your days policing the defence community. This could see you preventing crime, responding to incidents, or conducting investigations. As an NP, you are a sailor and military police, so you will receive ongoing training in weapons, medical, and other combat skills to keep you ready for deployments. You may also work closely with New Zealand Police in a variety of locations throughout Aotearoa.

Job on deployment

NP sailors deploy overseas as required. You will put your military policing skills to use investigating criminal and service-related crime, providing training to local policing or security agencies, or protecting senior military officers. You could also be policing coalition forces on multi-national bases, or deploying at short notice to conduct investigations.

Career progression and training


Basic training

Job training

Ongoing training

As your career develops, you will develop your investigation, policing, and security skills and take up leadership roles in Military Police Stations throughout New Zealand or onboard Ships. You will work closely with, and may undertake secondments to, NZ Police to enhance your investigative knowledge and skill set. You may also specialise in Investigations, where you'll be responsible for investigating the most serious incidents NP deal with; or in Close Protection, acting as a bodyguard or part of a security team for senior military and government personnel. 

Upon successful enlistment into the Navy you will be posted to Devonport, Auckland. Here you will do 16 weeks of basic military training to find out if you have what it takes to be in the Navy, and learn various subjects including:

  • Teamwork and support
  • Naval history and customs
  • Drill and parades
  • Core mariner skills and weapons training
  • First aid and firefighting
  • Physical fitness
  • Self-discipline

NZDF Military Police Basic Course

For 14 weeks at the Military Police Training Centre in Trentham, you will learn about the laws and regulations that you’ll enforce, how to respond to and control incidents, and how to deal with basic criminal offences. This course covers when and how to use force (unarmed, batons, OC spray, firearms), advanced driving techniques, the conduct of police patrols, how to interview people, and first aid skills.

Then you’ll be posted to an NP unit to put those new skills straight to use on the job. An extensive coaching and mentoring program will see you get off on the right foot, and support you through a probationary period to ensure that the NP role is the right one for you

Your next courses will teach you investigative skills like how to examine a crime scene and collect evidence, how to interview people to get valuable information from them, and how to analyse law and regulations. You’ll leave capable of conducting investigations into military and civilian offences including traffic accidents, assaults, or drug offences.

You will also develop your military skills, like how to operate within an MP Team, including unarmed control and restraint, use of various weapons and equipment, advanced driving, and how to provide military-level security to people and places.

Later courses will teach you how to plan and lead a security task; how to investigate serious criminal offences and war crimes; and how to plan police operations like raids or law enforcement patrolling. If you specialise in investigations or close protection, you will receive intensive training in those areas.

You’ll have the opportunity to attend a variety of courses with NZ Police and other law enforcement agencies in Aotearoa, as well as undertake various courses, training and exchanges with foreign country Military Police.

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Salary and benefits

Careers in the Navy are well-rewarded, diverse and exciting. As you become more experienced and move up through the ranks, gaining additional skills and qualifications, your salary will rise accordingly.


Under Initial Training


Starting Trade Training


Future Potential Earnings

Figures updated on July 1st 2023

Benefits and allowances

Earn a competitive salary while training or learning your trade, along with additional allowances for time spent in the field, at sea, overseas, or deployed on operations.

In addition to salary and allowances, other benefits of joining the New Zealand Defence Force include:

Access to your Service marae or tūrangawaewae

Sponsored tertiary study programmes at all levels

Free access to gyms and swimming pools on camp and bases

Opportunities to travel

Free and subsidised medical and dental care

Subsidised food and accommodation on camps and bases

Free and subsidised insurance cover

Help to buy a home and save for retirement

Entry requirements






  • Be a minimum of 17 years of age upon entry.
  • Be free of any criminal convictions.
  • Full Class 1 NZ Driver Licence.

3 years secondary school. Note, qualifications may be used to assess trade suitability.

There are strict citizenship and security requirements to gain the required SV security clearance for this trade.

There may be a return of service period for this trade.

Please contact our 0800 number or talk to your Candidate Experience Facilitator for more information.

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