Lucky duo flee armed captors
Two men have managed to escape armed captors who lured them to an abandoned property on the outskirts of Woodville under the guise of selling them a car but instead held them up at gunpoint and demanded money.
One of the victims was chased to a nearby paddock where he hid from his attackers.
The incident sparked an Armed Offenders Squad callout yesterday afternoon.
The man hid in a bush and called police while his mate escaped in a car following the attempted armed robbery at a house on State Highway 3, near the Papatawa Bridge, just before 3pm.
Police are hunting for three or four men in relation to the attempted armed robbery.
The victims appeared to have been set up but managed to escape unharmed and with their cash, Detective Sergeant Shane Brown, of Tararua CIB, said.
"[The offenders] have lured them there to an abandoned property under the guise of having a vehicle for sale. When they met up they have presented a firearm and they said, ‘give me the money'.
"From there the victims have run away and have not given them any money.
"One of them ran across a paddock and hid and the other got in a car and took off - it's very scary."
The victims were unknown to their attackers and there had been no similar incidents reported to police in the area in the past six months, Mr Brown said.
"I don't believe this was drug-related, it was more about money," he said.
"It was a pre-arranged meeting - they were going to buy a vehicle and they obviously had cash with them. They had been contacted by this person who said he had a vehicle for sale.
"They went to buy it with cash and there was no vehicle. [Then] these guys obviously tried to steal the money."
It is believed there may have been a fourth offender who was possibly a getaway driver.
Police expected to release more information regarding the offenders' descriptions and their getaway vehicle today.