A kidnapping prosecution case involving four Head Hunters who lured a rival gang member into a lap-dancing booth at a Tauranga bar was heard in the Tauranga District Court yesterday. Sandra Conchie reports.
Head Hunters who bashed and kidnapped a rival gang member after luring him into a lap-dancing booth at a Tauranga bar have been sentenced.
Jordan Christian, 26, Jared Cole, 32, David Clark, 41, and Kori O'Brien, 33, were sentenced in the Tauranga District Court yesterday after being found guilty by a jury of a kidnapping charge at their jury trials in September.
Cole and O'Brien were also sentenced in relation to a charge of injures with intent to injure and O' Brien to a further charge of assaults with intent to injure.
The pair pleaded guilty to the latter charges on day one of their trials on September 16.
Judge Christopher Harding described the four men's crimes as serious offending as it involved several aggravating factors, including blows to the head and multiple offenders.
The victim was initially detained by the four defendants at the Flaunt Bar on The Strand in the early hours of October 15, 2017, the court heard.
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After being escorted into a small lap-dancing booth in the bar, the victim was assaulted by Cole and O'Brien, which involved repeated blows to his face and head.
Judge Harding said the four defendants took turns to prevent the victim from leaving
the bar and the blows were clearly captured on CCTV security camera footage.
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After being assaulted, the victim was then escorted outside and taken to the Armitage Hotel in Willow St, Tauranga and was also detained from a period of time.
Sometime later the victim was taken in a taxi van to a flight club but he managed to alert a police officer drive passed in a patrol car who came to his aid, the judge said.
Judge Harding said the victim who was confined for three to four hours, believed his life was in danger given the four defendants' gang affiliations and collective presence.
The victim was "vulnerable" due to his intoxication, drug-taking, and he was left dazed after the assaults, he said.
"There was clearly a gang overtone to this offending given all four men are members of the Head Hunters and the complainant was from another gang," Judge Harding said.
Judge Harding said in setting each offender's sentence he had taken into account their previous histories, and mitigating factors, including their prospects of rehabilitation.
The judge said he also took into account that some of the defendants had taken steps to address their rehabilitation needs and shown some degree of remorse.
O'Brien was jailed for 2 years 7 months and Cole was jailed for two years on top of his existing prison sentence.
Clark was sentenced to 12 months home detention and 150 hours of community work.
and Christian also received a year's home detention and 120 hours of community work.