Taranaki's most wanted

01:12, Dec 05 2012
Five most wanted
New Plymouth police have released photos of their five most wanted. Pictured is Tamati Thomas
Five most wanted
New Plymouth police have released photos of their five most wanted. Pictured is Matthew Ratu
Five most wanted
New Plymouth police have released photos of their five most wanted. Pictured is Nico Joseph
Five most wanted
New Plymouth police have released photos of their five most wanted. Pictured is Rangi Abraham

A convicted methamphetamine cook and a man facing serious assault charges are among Taranaki's most wanted criminals.

Police are seeking the public's help to track down the five offenders who have all flicked ''the bird'' to the authorities and gone on the run.

Detective Senior Sergeant Grant Coward said police would desperately like to catch the offenders before Christmas.

''They all have the potential to create major problems if they can't be located by police,'' Mr Coward said.

Robert Hills, 44, of Okato, is facing three charges related to the manufacture of the class A drug methamphetamine after police raided his home on November 15.

''He hasn't been sighted since, police have been actively looking for him but we now require the public's help to locate him,'' Mr Coward said.

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In 2008 Hills pleaded guilty to a raft of drugs charges.

Tamati Ruka Thomas, 31, who has a previous conviction for aggravated robbery, is wanted for an attack on an inmate at New Plymouth prison on November 12.

''While a prison inmate he has allegedly seriously assaulted another inmate, breaking his jaw but before he could be dealt with by police he was released from prison,'' Mr Coward said.

Thomas was released from prison the day after the attack and has been actively avoiding police.

Rangi Abraham, 21, has a warrant out for his arrest after he failed to appear in court to face charges of possession of an offensive weapon, injuring with intent to injure and assaulting a female following a domestic assault in June.

Nico Joseph, 20, failed to appear in the Hawera Court in September to face two charges of stealing cars and one of burglary.

Mr Coward said Joseph would continue to offend until he was caught.

''He will hurt us if we don't catch him.''

Matthew Ross Ratu, 34, has a warrant out for his arrest and is facing charges of money laundering and burglary.

If anyone saw or knew the whereabouts of any of the five they could anonymously contact police on 06-759 5502.

''They have obviously committed serious offences and we would like to find them to ensure that they are held to account,'' Mr Coward said.

Taranaki Daily News