Fugitive Mathew Kidman caught

Notorious criminal Mathew Kidman has been known to be in possession of firearms. Photo / Supplied
Notorious criminal Mathew Kidman has been known to be in possession of firearms. Photo / Supplied

Fugitive Mathew Kidman has been arrested this evening in the Wellington suburb of Northland.

In a statement Wellington District Police said they'd arrested the man.

A police spokeswoman confirmed Kidman was caught just after 6pm.

She also confirmed an associate, who was with the fugitive at the time, had escaped in a vehicle but was arrested after police set chase.

She said no other details would be released till the morning.

Police would like to thank the media and public for their assistance in locating him.

Kidman, 35, removed his electronic bracelet and fled his Wellington address on Friday.

A notorious criminal, Kidman has a string of robbery and firearms offences stretching over the past decade.

It emerged the Department of Corrections did not recommend Mr Kidman receive electronically monitored bail, according to minister Judith Collins.

Kidman is one of a number of high profile cases in the last 12 months in which criminals have been able to remove their electronic monitoring bracelets and go on the run.

But Ms Collins said that represented "a tiny number".

She estimated between 0.5 per cent and 1 per cent of all people monitored electronically removed the bracelets.

"So we're talking a tiny number. Having said that, all of these people have been deemed by a judge to be able to be monitored in this way, rather than to be incarcerated in remand waiting for their trial."

He previously served time for aggravated robbery and has more than 70 past convictions, including firearms, drug and violence offences.

In 2005, Kidman was one of five prisoners awarded $8000 compensation in a court action for being held illegally under the "behaviour management regime" for difficult prisoners at Auckland Prison at Paremoremo.

In 2008, Kidman was at the centre of a two-day, armed police manhunt throughout the Hutt Valley after he was seen with a firearm visiting a house in the Wellington suburb of Naenae.

Over 48 hours he criss-crossed the valley, including surrounding hills, even using a cart used to pick up golf balls to evade capture.

He was on bail for firearms charges at the time and after that incident faced fresh firearms charges.

In 2004, Kidman walked away from the Hawkes Bay Regional Prison joinery workshop while serving a six-year sentence for aggravated robbery.

He made another escape bid from Hutt Valley District Court in 2012 when he kicked through a glass barrier to escape an interview room.

- NZ Herald

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