Criminals ‘have taken over the suburbs’

Posted by | Auckland Crime | 0 |

Offenders and criminals are “roaming our streets”, a meeting of Auckland lawmakers, police and dairy owners was told.

The increase in attacks on dairies and small businesses in south Auckland prompted a meeting with lawmakers, the police and dairy owners to tackle the issue.

Offenders and criminals are “roaming our streets”, a meeting of Auckland lawmakers, police and dairy owners was told.

Crime Prevention Group president Sunny Kaushal said robberies of dairies and small businesses in south Auckland are increasing, and “brutal attacks in broad daylight, in public spaces, show that the offenders have no fear of being caught.”

The Indian Association of NZ and the Crime Prevention Group have formed a list of demands for the authorities – increasing police patrolling, reopening closed police stations, recognising shop owners’ rights to defend themselves, and bringing in heavy penalties for resellers of stolen goods.

“The law and order appear to be getting out of control. If not stopped it will become an epidemic,’ Kaushal added. “Today these offenders are entering shops and businesses, tomorrow they will enter people’s homes.”

“They are working in a very organised way . . . they take shifts. We see this every day,” he said.

Places like Manurewa, Papakura, Papatoetoe and Otahuhu need special attention, he suggested.

Representing the Chinese community, David Yang said there was an “urgent need for lawmakers to review and toughen the laws” against offenders.

“We are all hardworking people, therefore we deserve the Government to protect us without any conditions,” he said. “Attacks happen every day. Maybe the Government thinks these are small things, therefore they don’t want to listen. That will definitely affect New Zealand’s economy.”

Representatives from all political parties attended the meeting. MP for Manurewa, Louisa Wall said a number of the crimes have been fuelled by poverty.

“We have 90,000 people not engaged in education, training and employment. If we want to look at who’s committing these crimes, seems to be young people who are living in a hopeless situation.

Dairy owners and small to medium business owners met to tackle the issues of policing and dairy robberies in south Auckland

“Who would choose to get money on what has now become a $10 million black market – that’s the value of the cigarette black market in New Zealand.”

National list MP Parmjeet Parmar acknowledged the increase in crime. Urging all the attendees, she said: “Report each and every criminal activity you face. When we see the numbers going up, then we know that we want to invest more in that sector.

“We have invested half a billion to increase the police numbers. Our aim is that 90 per cent of all emergency calls is answered within 10 seconds.”

The leader of New Zealand First, Winston Peters expressed his exasperation.

“The dairies of this country are being robbed. The owners are terrified. We need police patrols. You know who’s robbing you,” he said.

He said that in 2009, New Zealand had 3161 general duty constables, now there are 2593. “You have the right to go about your lawful business safely,” Peters concluded.

Inspector Julia Lynch from Counties Manukau Police said police are taking the issue “very seriously”.

“We’re doing everything we can with what we’ve got, but we need your help as well,” she said. “Since February, Counties Manukau Police have arrested and charged 62 offenders in relation to aggravated robberies of commercial premises and we’ve put them before courts.

“As well as holding offenders to account we’re also working towards prevention.”

– Stuff