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Operation Balance Recovers Stolen Property

Waikato Police have begun the process of returning stolen property recovered in a significant four-day operation targeting prolific theft and dishonesty offending.

Running over four days this month, Operation Balance focused on some of the Waikato’s most prolific dishonesty offending.

The operation involved search warrants in Ngaruawahia, Huntly and Kawhia, over the past three weeks. Police recovered a large haul of stolen items including a boat, vehicles, machinery and trade tools. Most of the recovered items have been returned to their owners and we have begun the process of identifying the owners of other recovered items.

Detective Senior Sergeant Terri Wilson says being able to return stolen goods to people is a privilege for Police.

“We work hard to locate and recover stolen property and hold offenders to account.

“It is pleasing to have achieved some great outcomes from Op Balance. It is a true reflection of staff working collectively across different areas within the organisation.”

In Ngaruawahia in late November, Police recovered a stolen boat and vehicle, as well as a firearm and ammunition.

Three stolen vehicles, cannabis, ammunition, and expensive tools and machinery were recovered from an address in Kawhia.

Two people are now facing multiple burglary and receiving charges. They have since appeared in Court.

In Huntly, more than 150 sets of car keys and two cell phones, believed to have been taken from Turners Auctions Hamilton in November, were recovered after members of the Waikato Tactical Crime Unit executed a search warrant.

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A 30-year-old man appeared in the Hamilton District Court this week on 10 charges of burglary relating to the search warrant.

A total of 19 individuals were arrested or summonsed to appear in either District or Youth Court.

A total of 81 cases were investigated and closed as a result of the four-day operation.

“As we head into the holiday season, this is a timely reminder for our community to make the security of your home and property a priority. A lot of reported thefts are committed by opportunistic criminals,” Detective Senior Sergeant Wilson says.

“There are a range of measures you can take to ensure your property is safe and less appealing to burglars:
• Secure your home, sheds and vehicles when unattended, even if it’s only for a short time.
• Record the serial numbers or engrave tools, electronic and valuable items with your license number.
• Install an alarm system and get sensor lights fitted as a deterrent.
• Keep in contact with your neighbours and look out for each other.”

If you see any suspicious activity, call Police immediately on 111.

To report suspicious activity after the fact, contact Police on 105.


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