Murder accused due in court

A man who had been charged with the murder of a Head Hunter gang member in Whangarei will reappear in court next week. Michael John Paewhenua, 27, was scheduled to appear for a callover in the High Court at Whangarei yesterday but the matter was rescheduled to Thursday next week.

He is accused of murdering Moses Noor Mahanga, 25, who died of a gunshot wound on October 4 last year as he sat in the driver's seat of a car parked in William Jones Drive near the entrance to Fishbone Park. Paewhenua entered a not guilty plea in February. His trial will start on November 27 and is expected to take 10 days.

No pleas in robbery case


One of the two men arrested and charged with the aggravated robbery of a Whangarei liquor outlet has appeared in court. No pleas were taken when Clifton Phillip Yates, 40, appeared before a Justice of the Peace in the Whangarei District Court this week.

He is facing two charges of aggravated robbery of the Otaika Liquor store using a firearm on March 27. Yates allegedly jointly offended with Daniel Kevin Wilson, 37, who police are still looking for. Both allegedly stole cash and cigarettes from the store.

Yates was remanded in custody to reappear on May 3 when he is expected to apply for bail. Anyone with information about Wilson should contact Detective Sergeant Dave Wilkinson, at the Whangarei Police Station on 09 430 4500 or Crime Stoppers on 0800 555 111.

Paintball gunman to be sentenced

A Raumanga man who pleaded guilty to charges relating to shooting six people with a paintball gun is expected to be sentenced on May 9. Shane Paraha, 18, has admitted five charges of assault with a weapon but has yet to plead on one charge of with reckless disregard caused grievous bodily harm.

The charges relate to him firing a paintball gun at six people in central Whangarei in the early hours of December 18 last year. One person was struck in the right eye and she may lose that eye. Paraha has been remanded on bail.

Arrests after vehicle spiked

Two people were arrested after the vehicle they were in was spiked following a pursuit.
Police said the pursuit started at 10.08 on Wednesday after a vehicle was spotted doing burnouts on State Highway 1, Moerewa. Police followed the vehicle to Hospital Rd where it was spiked. Two people were arrested.

Calls over missing twins

Northland police have received numerous phone calls after appealing for sightings of missing twin boys, but are yet to locate them. Police released photos of brothers Hamiora and Waiariki Chapman, also known as Sam and Storm, after becoming concerned for the boys' welfare.

Police said the brothers, who have been missing since December, were removed from Child, Youth and Family care - now the Ministry for Vulnerable Children - by family members known to them. The brothers are believed to be in the Northland area, possibly in the Mid-North or Whangarei.

If you have any information which could help police contact Senior Sergeant Stephanie Hudson on 09 430 4500 or phone Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.