In the small town of Ōpōtiki, police have been bestowed with greater searching authorities in the midst of tumultuous conflict between the Mongrel Mob and Black Power gangs. By employing recent legal measures, the police aim to diminish the growing gang violence that has taken root.
A 20-year-old woman, shot in the arm while sitting in her car, becomes the latest casualty of this ongoing battle. The injured woman is currently under attentive care at the Whakatāne Hospital, with her condition considered serious.
Senior Sergeant Tristan Murray, the Eastern Bay of Plenty’s acting area commander, shared with the press that recent court proceedings have equipped police with a special warrant under the Criminal Activity Intervention Legislation (CAIL) Act of 2023. This warrant empowers the police to execute special search actions during such episodes of gang unrest.
Endowed with this special warrant, local police in Ōpōtiki and Whakatāne are now capable of thoroughly searching locales and vehicles suspected to be in use by affiliated gang members. Furthermore, this also includes the right to seize any discovered firearms, weapons, and vehicles.
Senior Sergeant Tristan Murray assures the locals of persistent police efforts to eradicate such troubling behavior. He conveys their commitment to maintaining a noticeable police presence across both townships to ensure public safety.
Recent activities disrupting the peace of Ōpōtiki are largely attributed to the escalating tension and conflict between the Black Power and Mongrel Mob gangs. Among these incidents, one involves the shooting of a woman, seemingly connected to the current situation.
Further investigations led the police to the Tauranga region, where a vehicle was confiscated from a property located in Pāpāmoa.
In a statement released the previous week, the police acknowledged dealing with multiple firearms-related episodes in the Bay of Plenty town, which began on October 15.
An incident from that day involved a car being shot at and subsequently stolen after an armed individual threatened the residents. Following firing upon another domicile the next morning, a 29-year-old man was apprehended, leading to firearms charges. More gunfire targeting two separate residences happened on October 17.
Senior Sergeant Richard Miller clarified that despite these disturbing incidents, no physical harm was incurred. He further emphasized the danger related to such senseless offending, reminding that the lack of severe injuries or fatalities is purely due to fortunate circumstances.
The police urge the public for their cooperation, requesting them to provide information on individuals possessing firearms and weapons unlawfully. They assure the complete anonymity of anyone sharing such intel, directing them to report via Crime Stoppers at 0800 555 111.