A third person has been arrested in connection to two armed robberies in the eastern Bay of Plenty last month.

The Mobil Service Station in Waihi and the Park Road Dairy in Katikati were robbed within half an hour of each other on the morning of June 18.

A 19-year-old unemployed man from Te Aroha has been charged with two charges of assault with intent to rob as well as two charges of unlawful possession of a firearm.

He will appear in the Tauranga District Court today.


Police had been seeking 19-year-old Rastaman Rapatini in relation to the robberies, but police say he is no longer being sought.

The arrest came following the execution of search warrants in the Matahi Valley and on the outskirts of Whakatane yesterday morning.

Also arrested during the searches was a 17-year-old unemployed man from Rotorua. He has been charged with unlawful possession of an imitation firearm and will appear on July 24 in the Tauranga District Court.

Police also recovered two shotguns during the searches.

Detective Sergeant Alan Kingsbury said the arrests came as a result of information which had been supplied to the police.