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Kidnapping arrests in Waikato

Title: Kidnapping arrests in Waikato

The need to stamp out serious, unprovoked, violent behaviour was the driver behind an operation in the Waikato this morning by Police searching for a group of alleged kidnappers.

Waikato Crime Services Manager, Detective Inspector Russell Le Prou, said Police executed simultaneous search warrants at addresses in Taupiri and Morrinsville searching for two men wanted in relation to an incident on 01 October.

Officers from the Western and Eastern Waikato Police Areas were involved in the operation supported by members of the Waikato and Bay of Plenty Armed Offenders Squads.

"It is alleged that earlier this month a motorist was travelling on Gordonton Rd towards Hamilton when a car carried out an illegal U-turn in front of him and his vehicle collided with this car.

"Going to check if the occupants of the other car were okay the driver was confronted by a group of men armed with softball bats who proceeded to beat him, take his ATM cards and then hold him at a nearby property while others drove to Rototuna and took $1300 from his bank account."

Mr Le Prou said the victim was told the money was taken by the group as a form of reparation or 'anger money'.

"They seem to have been quite brazen about it, even informing their victim there were no hard feelings and that they were in the business of selling car parts should he to repair his vehicle."

"This type of behaviour is totally unacceptable, our staff pointed out it could've been any one of them, their families or any member of the public driving along that road at that particular time and it was important this type of behaviour was stamped out."

The two men were due to appear in the Hamilton District Court this afternoon jointly charged with kidnapping.

Mr Le Prou said further arrests and charges are likely.

ENDS

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