$200k robbery planned in jail
Police have charged four men who allegedly conspired to rob a woman of up to $200,000 after obtaining information through tapping a prisoner's illegal cell phone.
Joshua John Ashby, James Sturch, Dwaine Carl Tohini and Steven John Tainui face charges of participating in an organised criminal group between March 16 and 26 and conspiring to commit aggravated robbery.
Police claim Tainui, a Mt Eden prisoner, arranged for Ashby, Sturch and Tohini to rob an Asian woman thought to be in possession of between $100,000 and $200,000 cash.
The woman, who police are yet to identify, is thought to have had the cash to buy antiques.
Police believe that one or more of the men were going to arm themselves with a firearm and stun gun to commit the robbery.
The men were arrested before the alleged crime was to take place.
Tainui was charged by police on August 2 along with Sturch and Tohini.
Sturch, who is believed to have been on bail at the time of the alleged conspiracy, has been remanded in custody, while Tohini has been remanded on bail.
Ashby was charged on Wednesday and appeared in the Auckland District Court where he was remanded on bail.
Police are still searching for the group's alleged victim.
They would like to hear from any Asian female who may fit the criteria.
Anyone with information is urged to contact Detective Mike Williams on (09) 259 1001.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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