Police not ruling out theft connections

Police are not ruling out the possibility three men who terrorised an Upper Hutt couple in an armed robbery on Sunday night may be connected to three men arrested in Wainuiomata today.

The robbers allegedly stole $50,000 from the Upper Hutt couple, after they burst into their home on Chatsworth Rd in Silverstream wearing masks about 6pm Sunday.

Malcolm Wiffen, 67, and his wife Yvonne, 65, were kicked and had rifles pushed against their heads by the robbers demanding to know where their safe was, as they ransacked the home.

The couple, who were not injured, were forced to open the safe and trio fled after taking more than $50,000 worth of cash and gold jewellery.

Jeremy Gorinski, 32, who had been wanted for several weeks for a string of alleged thefts around wider Wellington, Rotorua and Taupo, was one of three men arrested in Wainuiomata today after armed officers stormed a house there.

Upper Hutt Area Commander Inspector Mike Hill told NZPA police teams conducting both investigations were communicating about a possible connection.

"We're not ruling that out... It's a line that we are also investigating."

The men responsible for the Chatsworth robbery were described as darks skinned. Gorinski is Caucasian.

Police had completed a scene examination at Chatsworth Rd and sent several items for forensic examination, Mr Hill said.

This weekend officers would continue to canvass the area, speaking to residents.

Police wanted to hear from anyone with information, he said.

The three Chatsworth Rd robbers were described as Maori, Polynesian or African, of athletic build. All were wearing dark coloured clothing with their faces concealed by balaclavas.

One offender was around 1.57m, a second a full head and shoulders taller than that, and the third about 1.83m.

Police think a fourth person may have driven to and from the scene.


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