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A mid-afternoon fight between rival gang members at a roadside park in Rakaia over the weekend has resulted in three arrests.
A 26-year-old man was charged with assault with intent to injure and unlawfully carrying a firearm, and a 20-year-old man was charged with assault with intent to injure, after the altercation between gang members on Bridge St about 3pm on Sunday.
The men were due to appear in the Ashburton District Court on Friday.
Police inquiries into the incident are ongoing.
Shocked witnesses watched on as the fight took place, and police have CCTV footage of the incident from a nearby security camera.
A motorist told The Star he was driving through Rakaia when he saw a patched gang member walk into the reserve. Soon after, others arrived and a fight broke out.
“It was all on,” he said.
He did not stop because he had his wife and young son in the car.
“Other people were pulling over and watching. We decided to get out of there,” he said.
Ashburton district mayor Neil Brown was unaware of the incident but acknowledged gangs have a presence in the area.
“There’s gang activity in the Ashburton district but it’s not very strong.
"I’ve heard there’s four to five different types (organisations). It may only be one member [of each gang] keeping an eye on things.”