After a men's room confrontation with his new boss' right-hand man, Maori cop Tito Ihaka has been sent into exile. Out of the blue McGrail summons him back to Auckland. Christopher Lilywhite, the businesswoman's terminally ill husband whom Ihaka suspected was behind his wife's death, wants to see him.
Lilywhite confesses that he had his wife murdered, but he dealt with the hit-man at arm's length so has no idea who he is. In quick succession Lilywhite and another potential source of information are murdered. Ihaka's old rival Detective Inspector Tony Charlton takes control of the case but with more corpses turning up and Auckland Central stretched to breaking point, he agrees to let Ihaka investigate the apparently unrelated murder of a young man about town.
As the investigations expand uncovering a blackmail operation preying on married women, gang activities controlled from inside Paremeremo prison and possible police corruption, Ihaka realises that the cases are related and he's hunting a faceless and prolific hit-man. Or is the hit-man hunting him?