Police hunt missing guns

LYN HUMPHREYS
Last updated 05:00 16/05/2014

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A police investigation is under way after two firearms - believed to be Glock pistols - were stolen from a high security locker in the New Plymouth courthouse.

They were discovered missing in June last year, New Plymouth police confirmed yesterday.

They would not reveal what type of firearms were stolen but a source has told the Taranaki Daily News they were two Glock pistols.

Police are equipped with Glocks but it's unclear if the pistols were police issue.

It would be unusual for a civilian to have a licence for a Glock unless he or she was a member of a pistol club.

Access to the evidence locker where the firearms were stored is highly restricted but it is believed the firearms disappeared from that locker.

The courthouse locker usually contains exhibits to be used in upcoming or current trials.

Since the incident was reported to police, one firearm has been located and a man in his 50s, understood to be from Taumarunui, has been charged with unlawful possession of the firearm in addition to other charges.

The case is still before the courts and expected to be heard outside Taranaki.

The investigation, headed by the Taranaki CIB, is continuing.

The Ministry of Justice district courts general manager Tony Fisher confirmed yesterday the theft was reported to police last year.

Police and the Justice Department declined to answer further questions.

The paper also believes that the firearms are not connected to the New Plymouth Golf Club shooting when Adam Morehu, armed with a firearm, fired at and was fatally shot by police.

When killed, Morehu and his friend Kevin Bishell were attempting to flee from police after ransacking the golf clubhouse and proshop.

Bishell pleaded guilty to the burglary and will be sentenced at a later date.

Police are calling for anyone who has information about the theft to contact the police on 06 759 5500 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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