A person who knows the mobster who has been knocking on people's doors across Auckland has revealed he lives in Northcote and that he has been to drug rehab.

On Monday, a "spooked" mother in the upmarket Auckland suburb of Northcote Point warned fellow residents that a Mongrel mobster with face tattoos knocked on her door asking for donations.

This warning sparked others to come forward to the Herald and speak about their experience with the "non-threatening" mobster on the condition they remain anonymous.

Now a person who knows him has revealed to the Herald more details about the mobster and confirmed that some of his spiels to people have been true.

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"The family do live in Northcote, but he has been doing this door-knocking in Sandringham and West Auckland," he told the Herald.

"He has been through rehab ... I believe he's presenting his graduation certificate from rehab and saying he been raising money for a van.

"In terms of him raising money, I'm not sure whether that is for a van or not."

He revealed that the mobster has nine, not eight children, ranging from the ages of 18 months old to 20 years old.

The man described the mobster as short, probably about 5"6' and "fairly stocky", and remembers him only having one tooth.

"He is quite a softly spoken and gentle guy, but he is incredible intimidating to look at because of the cheek tattoo," the source said.

"I can see how someone like that knocking on your door ... it would frighten me.

"People would judge his look and the colour of his skin with the tattoos on his face - and the mongrel mob one is quite distinctive."

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The man said he is a gentle person currently, even though his past might not indicate that at all.

"He is one to be wary of because if he got involved back in the gang world and drugs again he would be all over the show.

"If there was any evidence of violence going on then I would certainly go through the police straight away.

However, the man who knows him said he generally wished him well.

"I think he needs a break and I can see why people wouldn't employ him," he said.

On Monday, a Northcote Point resident answered the door and spoke with the mobster who said he was looking for donations for a family vehicle.

The mobster delivered a spiel about how it has been hard for him to find work because he has been in and out of jail and rehab and that his daughters were pushing him to make money so the family could buy a $2800 seven-seater van.

"He's out of rehab and his kids are the ones that said, 'dad, stop doing that. Make an honest dollar'.

"One stage when he was talking his eyes started to well up, he took a couple of steps back and he was like 'this is really hard for me, I'm sorry, I'm trying to do my best. I just want to get a van for my kids'."

The mobster told him that he has been in South Auckland and West Auckland looking for donations and he now was knocking on people's doors in Northcote Point.

After the mobster's spiel, the resident found him "non-aggressive" and "non-threatening" and therefore decided to give him a $5 donation.

"He wasn't intimidating," the resident said about the encounter.

"I didn't think anything of it, other than there was a guy that came to my door and he was asking for koha. I could have sent him away, I could have said no, I could have ignored him, I could have shut the door on his face but I decided to listen to him and I made the choice to help him with a $5 donation for his cause."

But thinking about it afterwards, the male resident told his partner what happened and suggested she post a warning on her local Facebook page to warn others.

"I'm a male, it didn't mean a lot to me, but there are a lot of males around here that are at work and their wives are home with their young kids and I could imagine if he turned up at most of the places at Northcote Point, the women would get bit of a shock and a fright."

The female resident then reported the incident to police after making a Facebook post on her local page yesterday morning.

"He could be completely legit, but it if it was just me on my own at home with the kids I would have been really unsettled if it had been me answering the door," she told the Herald.

A police spokesman said that "police are aware of this report."

"We encourage members of the public to report any suspicious behaviour to police immediately."