It had felt like a long time coming, but robbery victim Malcolm Wiffen was relieved to hear two men had been found guilty of tying him and his wife up during a gunpoint robbery at their home.
Malcolm, 68, and Yvonne Wiffen, 66, had been at the Wellington District Court on Tuesday to hear the judge sum up the case against Jeremy Brian Gorinski, 34, and Dinesh Kumar Manoharan, 36, who were yesterday found guilty of aggravated robbery on June 19 last year.
The Crown said they broke into the Wiffens' Silverstream home about 6pm, held guns to their heads, demanded money and gold, forced Mrs Wiffen to open their safe and left them tied up on their living room floor with pillowcases on their heads. They left with between $50,000 and $70,000.
Mr Wiffen said they initially had a gut reaction that the men would be found not guilty and were "chuffed" with the result. The Wiffens are now to put in victim impact statements to the judge for sentencing.
Gorinski and Manoharan were found guilty by the jury after seven hours deliberation and both were remanded in custody by Judge Bruce Davidson to be sentenced next month.
Both their lawyers had said the men were not at the scene of the crime and were never identified by the Wiffens.
Crown prosecutor Sally Carter had said it was too much of a coincidence that Gorinski was seen with a group of people in Palmerston North flashing around a lot of money a day after the robbery and that when he and Manoharan were arrested items stolen from the Wiffens were found.
Gorinski was caught wearing a ring that belonged to the couple at a Coast Rd house in Wainuiomata several days after the robbery.
A trinket box taken from the Wiffens' safe was found in a nearby backpack.
Gorinski and Manoharan had tried to hide from police in a garage loft of the house when they heard police were searching for them. Both had warrants out for other offending at the time.
- The Dominion Post