A popular local coffee cart which was reported missing was found damaged and ransacked just hours later.
Barista Ross Betteridge owns Rossco's Espresso Bar and operates at the Rotorua Farmers Market on Sunday mornings. But when he got up to head to work on the Sunday just gone, his coffee cart was missing.
He anxiously waited until his van and cart were found a few blocks away from his home in Tauranga.
"That's a part of your business, it's your livelihood, so without it, you've got nothing," he told NZME.
The van and cart were reported missing about 5am, from Devonport Rd, and found damaged just after 9am on Eighteenth Ave.
"They hadn't touched the outside of it but the cart was all ransacked inside," Betteridge said.
"Luckily they hadn't got far - it was quite incredible."
His petrol gauge was broken before the theft, showing the van was empty, and Betteridge suspected that was one reason why the van was found close to home.
"I thought it was going to be completely written off - that someone would have taken it for a joyride and flipped it over or down a bank but no."
His insurance will recover the repairs and replacements.
Betteridge has been operating a mobile coffee fleet for 10 years in the Bay of Plenty, serving beverages at community, corporate, fundraising and sports events.
He had not been targeted by thieves before.
The cart was found by a member of the public who had seen on Facebook that it was missing.
A police spokeswoman said an officer had "examined the van and trailer for evidence" to identify those responsible.
"If anyone has information which could assist our inquiries, they're asked to call 105."