At least one copycat
Facebook group has sprung up in the wake of the Roast Busters
underage sex scandal, with links to an Auckland school.
Joseph Parker and Beraiah
Hales have boasted online of their actions.
It has already been taken down but not before Mount Albert
Grammar School staff called police.
The latest development came as the members of the original
Roast Buster group, which bragged about getting girls drunk
and having sex with them, went to ground in the face of
mounting anger including death threats, and police drafted in
a senior officer from elsewhere to go over the case.
The copycat group appeared to be a "Mount Albert chapter" of
Roast Busters and was linked to the school, Mount Albert
Grammar School principal Dale Burden confirmed last night.
He said school staff were alerted to the page by a concerned
parent on Monday night.
Three or four of his students, as well as a former student,
"We didn't read any bragging or any reference at all to what
they had done or what they were going to do," Mr Burden said
"It was delinquent talk, is the best way to describe it, but
it was connected to the Roast Busters site."
Despite not seeing any criminality, Mr Burden suspected it
was a copycat group and contacted police.
They told him not to notify the families of the students in
the group and would do it themselves if necessary.
The page was closed down yesterday but it was unclear whether
it was voluntary or if authorities stepped in.
Mr Burden said it was gone shortly after the call to police
was made yesterday morning.
Detective Inspector Bruce Scott of Waitemata police, who was
in charge of the Roast Busters case, said he was unaware of
the page and didn't believe it had been referred to his team.
The Roast Busters have caused outrage after bragging in
videos posted on its Facebook page about getting underage
girls drunk and having sex with them.
Their members include Joseph Levall Parker, the son of
Hollywood actor Anthony Ray Parker, his friend Beraiah Hales,
and the son of a serving police officer.
Roast Busters Facebook page, and the profile pages of a
number of its members - who are said to have targeted girls
as young as 13 - have been taken down since news of their
activities broke on Sunday.
The young men have gone to ground in the face of mounting
anger. Death threats have begun circulating on social media
and vigilante groups and online forums have called for harsh
Police said they were taking the threats against the young
men seriously and issued a warning to vigilantes that they
would feel the full force of the law if they took justice
into their own hands.
Waitemata Police District Commander Superintendent Bill
Searle said his team was willing to offer protection to the
young men if the threats against them escalated.
"If the situation they find themselves [in] warranted us to
take action then we would, irrespective of who they are or
what they may have been involved in," he said.
However, he said it had not come to that as yet, and he was
not aware of any of them asking for help from police.
"We haven't got any evidence that's been provided that
suggests that we need to take any extra action," he said.
However, when APNZ called at the home of one of the group
yesterday after an address was posted on Beraiah Hales'
YouTube account, the occupants said they would call police.
A neighbour said Joseph Parker had been living at the house,
which property records show is owned by people with that
The occupants of the west Auckland home would not open the
door but told reporters to leave or the police would be
A middle-aged woman and man, dressed in hoodies and dark
sunglasses, left the house, got into cars parked outside and
A younger man and woman left a short time later, the woman
carrying a small baby.
The young man said Joseph Parker was not there and he did not
know where he was or when he'd be back.
Some neighbours told the media they had driven the family out
of their home but another, who did not want to be named, was
shocked to learn of Joseph Parker's actions.
"He's so young," they said.
Joseph and his friends were often seen hanging out on
weekends at the nondescript suburban house at the end of a
The neighbour had seen his famous father at the house about a
week ago, carrying flowers.
Police have reinterviewed two members of the group, including
one who had previously refused to co-operate.
Mr Searle said while the information had yet to provide any
new leads, it was still being analysed.
No fresh claims from victims had been raised since Sunday but
police were still in contact with a number of girls from the
original inquiry. None of them wanted to make formal
complaints, Mr Searle said.
An independent senior police officer has been drafted in to
help the team and cast a "fresh set of eyes" over the
information already gleaned.
Mr Searle denied this had been prompted by criticism the
police had failed to act, and said the detective, who is from
a different district, would re-examine all the evidence to
see if anything had been missed.
- Patrice Dougan and Matthew Theunissen of APNZ