16 Jul 2015

'Ali Baba' of the Eastern Waikato arrested

1:54 pm on 16 July 2015

Police in Eastern Waikato say a treasure trove of stolen property has been recovered near Morrinsville, while a man police described as ''Ali Baba'' has been arrested.

Acting Sergeant Shane Doddrell of Morrinsville police said thousands of dollars worth of property, believed stolen in rural burglaries around Morrinsville and Te Aroha, was found during the search of a Waitoa property earlier this month.

"We'd gone there originally seeking a stolen motorbike.

"Instead we recovered a ride-on lawn mower, chainsaws, a post hole borer, waterblasters, welders, electrical tools, tool chests, x-boxes and games, laptops, flat screen TVs, stolen firearms, gun-safes, cannabis, methamphetamine, and cash.

"Such was the haul we had to acquire a tandem axle furniture trailer in order to remove all the recovered property," he said.

Mr Doddrell said while a man was arrested in relation to the items recovered from his property, the search for others involved continued.

"This person was a focus of our inquiries in relation to his receiving of property taken in a spate of rural burglaries in and around Morrinsville and Te Aroha.

"The search was one of the more successful ones I've been involved with since joining police, and we certainly expect it to slow down the rate of burglaries in the rural community that have been occurring."

Mr Doddrell said police also targeted receivers as that removed a potential market burglars use to offload stolen property.

"At the same time, we work to locate the burglars and the receivers of stolen property - there's an important role the public can play to assist us.

"As well as calling police and noting down registration numbers and descriptions of suspicious vehicles and people, property owners can use the SNAP website to record images and serial numbers of their valuables."