There have been dramatic scenes involving armed police in central Auckland today, the latest in a series of gun-related incidents in the city.
Police confirmed this afternoon's drama was connected to a gun being fired at the luxury Sofitel Hotel last week - understood by the Herald to be gang-related.
A witness told the Herald they saw officers with guns drawn during the 3.45pm incident at the corner of Beaumont and Gaunt Sts.
"We saw a white car enter Beaumont St from the south, followed by at least five police vehicles. They stopped at the corner of Beaumont and Gaunt Sts.
"The driver was instructed to get his hands out of the car and bystanders were instructed to step back. The police had guns drawn."
The person being arrested got out of the car and was instructed to walk backwards to the police, where he knelt down and was arrested, the witness said.
Police investigating last week's Sofitel incident located a vehicle of interest in the inquiry about 3pm today, Detective Inspector John Sutton, of Waitematā CIB said.
"An armed vehicle stop was carried out and the sole occupant of the vehicle was taken into custody. This person is assisting us with our inquiries, however the main person of interest in the investigation – Hone Reihana – still remains outstanding.
"We are continuing to ask the public if they sight Reihana not to approach him and to call police on 111 immediately."
Anyone with further information should call 09 477 5221 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
Today's armed arrest follows a series of gun-related crime in the central city, most recently last weekend, when a man allegedly pointed a loaded gun at people in downtown Auckland - two days after the shooting incident at the Sofitel sparked an armed police callout.
The man allegedly involved in the weekend incident fled on foot but was soon apprehended on Saturday morning, Detective Senior Sergeant Steve Anderson of Auckland City CIB said.
"At the time, a handgun allegedly used in the incident was also located by police."
The man later appeared in Auckland District Court charged with unlawfully possessing a firearm and with resisting police.
The incident is not thought to be directly linked to gang tensions, but followed soon after shots were fired at the Sofitel.
The Herald understands members of the Head Hunters opened fire after encountering members of the Mongols in the Sofitel.
Detective Inspector John Sutton said that incident was linked to an earlier shooting at the Head Hunters' Mt Wellington gang pad.
A senior police source said broad concerns existed about an increase in gun crime in recent months.
In December, a gun was fired at Calendar Girls strip club and a fight erupted and a firearm discharged at Dr Rudi's bar in the Viaduct.