Please attribute to Acting Senior Sergeant Mark Brown Northland Police:
Police arrested two men after a three-tonne digger on a trailer was stolen in Northland around 2.15am on Monday 30 January.
A witness watched in real time as two men walked onto a property and attached a trailer with a digger on board, to their vehicle.
The trailer was parked at an address in Tikipunga, Northland beside another digger on a trailer.
The two men then got into their vehicle and drove off leaving the second digger and trailer behind, which they could not connect.
Thanks to a tracker installed on the digger, Police were able to know where the digger and trailer was.
The witness passed information to Whangarei police while the theft was in progress and locally based front line Police headed to the location of the stolen digger.
With Police Emergency Communications operators and staff on the ground working in unison, a plan was devised to catch the offenders in the act.
With continuous updates provided, a number of patrol cars cordoned the vehicle and lay tyre spikes on the road.
Two men were caught and arrested after their vehicle was stopped safely by road spikes, which deflated the car tyres on Kirikopuni Valley Road.
“Working together with a community member helped stop these thieves in their tracks. We were able to maintain an overview with maps and assist with potential locations.
We are thrilled to be able to return the digger, worth around $150,000 to the owner and we want to acknowledge information received which has helped us resolve this incident quickly.
Their information played a significant role in the swift arrests which enabled the recovery of the property.
Some further inquiries showed the car that the offenders were using to steal the trailer and digger, was also a stolen vehicle.
A 46-year-old man and 23-year-old man, both from Northland have been jointly charged with burglary and unlawfully taking a motor vehicle.
They will be appearing before the Whangarei District Court at a later date.
Call 111 in an emergency if something is happening right now, illegal or suspicious. If it’s already happened you can provide information via the Police non-emergency number – call 105 or go online at 105.police.govt.nz
Waea atu ki 111 me he ohotata, e tū ana rānei tētahi mea taihara, hihira rānei i taua wā tonu. Mēnā kua pahawa kē, me tuku taipitopito mā te nama ohotata-kore a Ngā Pirihimana - waea atu ki 105, toro ki te ipurangi ki 105.police.govt.nz rānei
Issued by Police Media Centre