Gunman jailed over terrifying home invasion

By Jimmy Ellingham

Alexi Tereora. File photo / NZ Herald
Alexi Tereora. File photo / NZ Herald

A gun-toting man also involved in a terrifying home invasion has been jailed for eight years and 10 months.

Alex Tereora, 32, appeared for sentence in the High Court at Auckland today after earlier admitting one charge each of aggravated robbery, assault with a weapon and threatening to use a gun against a police officer.

Justice Geoffrey Venning imposed a minimum non-parole period of five years.

On the evening of June 3, 2012, Tereora and at least two others broke into a Papatoetoe house. The bandits were wearing balaclavas and gloves.

While they were there a middle-aged man who lived there arrived home. He was dragged from his car into his lounge, where he was forced to lie on the floor face-down with his hands tied behind his back.

The man was told he would be kicked if he tried to look at the attackers, who demanded to know where the man kept his gold and money.

In the end they took property worth $3500.

The man's victim impact statement speaks of his terror: "There's not a day goes by where I do not feel unsafe or in danger, even in my home, where I should feel safe."

On June 8, 2012, Tereora and an associate confronted a woman and her 14-year-old daughter at their house. The only link between Tereora and the woman was that he bought a laptop from her about six years earlier.

Tereora demanded the woman's daughter get in his car but the woman screamed at him to get out. As he left he pointed a pistol at the woman.

Finally, six days later, police pulled over a car Tereora was passenger in. He resisted attempts to arrest him and reached for a pistol.

"As you were reaching for the pistol you said to the constables: 'You're going to get it, you're going to get it'."

Justice Venning added to Tereora's sentence for his criminal history, but shaved some time off for his guilty pleas, which came on the eve of his trial.

Defence lawyer Soana Moala said Tereora had little family support, but he did have a partner and a 7-year-old son.

Tereora distrusted authority figures, but understood that his offending was serious.

- APNZ

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