Wednesday, February 20, 2008
STOLEN NEW ZEALAND WAR MEDALS RETURNED - BUT THE INTRIGUE CONTINUES...
Stolen NZ war medals returned - but the intrigue continues...
First published at Qassia:
While the stolen New Zealand war medals have been returned, and we as a society are extremely pleased about that, the intrigue continues.
There are a couple of questions doing the rounds here:
1/ Were the medals stolen knowing that New Zealanders were so irate and upset they would support a reward?
2/ Were criminal ethnic gangs involved in the burglary, or did they become involved once a reward was mentioned?
I'd like to comment on what the New Zealand media claims happened.
A former gang member was granted bail twice as part of a deal for the return of stolen war medals. He was first granted bail on January 18 from Mount Eden prison in Auckland City. He had been on remand on drugs charges.
It was allegedly part of an arrangement made for the return of the 96 war medals, stolen in a raid on the Waiouru Army Museum on December 2 2007.
The man reappeared in court on January 21 on another set of charges, and was bailed again on the same terms.
These revelations come after claims made by a named lawyer who stated he brokered the deal, using his contacts to find who had the medals and spending time getting their trust.
Police neither confirmed or denied what had been said yesterday, or revealed how long the man had been in jail before being bailed.
The man told a Sunday newspaper who will obviously be publishing a story soon,that he did it to be be with his "missus and kids" rather than receiving financial gain.
He said further that he was in prison waiting trial on charges of possession of methamphetamine for supply when he heard about the burglary of the army museum.
Through his contacts, the former gang member who has facial tattoos of the gang's name on his cheeks and its insignia on his forehead, has found out who is responsible. He has recently been linked with a another notorious gang,but claims he's finished with gang culture.
But other gang members had found out that this was an opportunity for monetary gain - after all they are opportunists like any other criminals.
The gang member did his part of the deal gaining the information for the lawyer who had brokered the deal with police and the Crown to get his bail.
Those responsible for the burglary and theft from the army museum have not been named, and the amount of the reward/ ransom also has not been disclosed.
The gang member involved will still face drug charges and could face a prison sentence for those crimes.
This is an intriguing story which still has one or two more twists to it before the truth is known.