Operation Pukapuka, the Police investigation into the burglaries of libraries and museums throughout New Zealand is currently trying to track books that have been on sold through internet sites, in particular the NZ auction site Trademe.
One user name for the offerings of books and for auctions where some of the stolen books have been offered for sale was "thetrenches" on the Trademe site.
Trademe are co-operating with the Police in order to facilitate the investigation.
Detective Senior Sergeant John Rae, the Officer in Charge of the investigation said today, "Because the investigation team expect there is a large number of purchasers of books through this site since 14 November 2002 a web page on the national Police website has been created. Persons who have bought books are able to open that page and register as someone who has bought books and specify the names of the books concerned.
The Police would like to hear from anyone who has bought books, particularly rare books, historical New Zealand books or books by New Zealand authors which have been signed by the author to register on the Operation Pukapuka web page.
To date the Police have received numerous calls from members of the public who have bought books that may be of interest to the investigation. This not only assists the Police but it helps to put the minds of those to rest who have bought books which were not stolen.
E W J RAEDetective Senior SergeantCANTERBURY direct line 03 363 7754