More pressure on red zone raiders

Last updated 17:18 15/01/2014

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Technology and judges are joining forces to combat burglaries in red zone areas.

Judge Alistair Garland warned that offenders targeting Christchurch's red zone would not be treated lightly after a man caught "red-handed" was remanded in custody for sentencing on February 25.

Morgan Boyd McIntyre, 30, was holding a tap he had dismantled when police arrived at the Parish St, Burwood, address on January 9.

Judge Garland said there were substantial problems in red zone areas where people had been entering homes and stripping them of valuable items, including hot water cylinders and plumbing equipment.

In some cases they also caused significant damage by setting them on fire.

Judge Garland said motion-sensor surveillance cameras had been set up to detect the offending, which was how McIntyre was caught.

Courts have repeatedly warned that people caught entering and damaging red zone properties are likely to receive terms of prison.

It was the only way the court could attempt to deter offenders, he said.

McIntyre was caught with an alleged associate, Jason George Leroy, 36, of Mairehau, who was given a registrar's remand to February 7 to apply for legal aid.

McIntyre told the police that he needed money, and his defence counsel said the motive behind the offending was to get cash for drugs.

Judge Garland remanded McIntyre in custody for a pre-sentence report with a report to assess his suitability for a home detention sentence.

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