9 Oct 2004

Cook Islands bank manager abducted in robbery bid

9:09 am on 9 October 2004

Police in the Cook Islands are hunting for three men who attempted to rob a bank after abducting the manager from her home at knifepoint.

The Police Commissioner Pira Wichman says it's the first time the Cook Islands has seen a crime of this nature.

The Cook Islands News reports that three men each with a kitchen knife abducted Gayle Stapleton from her home on Thursday night.

The masked men then drove the ANZ manager in her own jeep in Avarua in an attempt to get her to open the bank's vault.

Police commissioner Pira Wichman said when they arrived at the bank, they threatened a staff member outside the building.

Commissioner Wichman says that the men then drove off and left Ms Stapleton unharmed.

The car was found yesterday and police are looking for the suspects.