Police had a front row seat to the antics of Hamilton copper thieves wheeling their loot to their vehicle under the cover of darkness.
The cops were able to quickly pounce and make an arrest of the wheelbarrowing bandits and return the stolen property to its owners.
Waikato police Senior Sergeant Simon Cherry said police received a call just before 1am today from concerned members of the public who thought the Fairfield property was vacant.
Builders had been at the Kenney Cres house earlier in the day carrying out repairs, so when a vehicle turned up in the middle of the night, they knew something was amiss.
The witnesses contacted police immediately who were able to get to the scene and watch on as the thieves filled a wheelbarrow with copper spouting and then piled it into their vehicle.
"We were aware of what was going and we had some observations of the [alleged] thief's wheelbarrow and the offenders returned one was arrested. And we recovered the copper from their home address."
Cherry said the alleged offenders did not live far from the property.