Gang involved in assault on Northland man - police


Police believe members and associates of the Mongrel Mob were involved in the New Year's Eve assault on Northland man.

A number of search warrants were executed in the Moerewa township this morning as the investigation into the death of 35-year-old Lee Rata continued.

Mr Rata was found badly injured in Bonnetts Rd, Kaitaia, about 11pm on New Year's Eve and died around lunchtime on New Year's Day

A number of arrests have been made on unrelated matters during the search warrants executed today. These include drug dealing, assault and dishonesty offending.

Police now believe that members and associates of the Mongrel Mob were involved in the assault on Mr Rata.

They were attending a wedding and reception that took place at an address in Bonnett Road on New Years Eve.

The person arrested and charged in relation to the death has been remanded in custody and he has name suppression.

The tangi for Mr Rata concludes today.

"The investigation will continue until all those responsible are located.
This was a vicious beating where a number of people have set upon Mr Rata," said Detective Inspector Kevin Burke.

Any person who has any information are asked to contact the Kaitaia Police on 09 408 6500.

Alternatively, if you wish to pass on information anonymously please contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

- Northern Advocate

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