Man charged after Piha fires keeps name suppressed

Adey's Place fish and chip shop in Piha was destroyed by a fire Police and the Fire Service were treating it as suspicious. Photo / Jason Oxenham
Adey's Place fish and chip shop in Piha was destroyed by a fire Police and the Fire Service were treating it as suspicious. Photo / Jason Oxenham

A man charged following a spate of fires in the seaside community of Piha will keep his identify secret for now.

The 19-year-old Piha resident was arrested in Tauranga after a number of fires broke out at the settlement on Auckland's west coast in the early hours of May 7.

He faces three arson charges and one of burglary.

At the Waitakere District Court on Monday, Judge June Jelas extended a suppression on his name until his next appearance in June.

The man was granted the suppression last week following reports threats had been made against him on social media.

His lawyer, Paul Dacre, QC, on Monday told the court the accused - appearing by video link - had yet to be transferred to Auckland and there had been no time to discuss how they would proceed.

No pleas were entered and the 19-year-old has been remanded in custody.

Two of the arson charges he faces relate to the blazes at Piha, while a third is over a separate fire at central Auckland's Viaduct Event Centre.

Along with one house being evacuated and 20 others threatened, popular cafe Adey's Place was gutted by one of the fires.

About 90 firefighters and two helicopters were called out, with about seven hectares of scrub also destroyed.

- AAP

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