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Leo Molloy installs 240-volt electric fence at bar as vandals cause $60k damage

Author
Joseph Los'e,
Publish Date
Wed, 6 Sep 2023, 1:24PM
Restaurateur Leo Molloy. Photo / Brett Phibbs
Restaurateur Leo Molloy. Photo / Brett Phibbs

Leo Molloy installs 240-volt electric fence at bar as vandals cause $60k damage

Author
Joseph Los'e,
Publish Date
Wed, 6 Sep 2023, 1:24PM

Public Interest Journalism funded through NZ On Air

Well-known Auckland restaurateur Leo Molloy has spent thousands of dollars to protect his bar from vandalism by installing an electric fence on the roof.

Three months ago, a young man made it onto the roof of the HQ bar, in Auckland’s viaduct, and caused thousands of dollars of damage.

Now Molloy has installed an electric fence that will give any would-be rooftop vandal a shocking 240-volt reception. Molloy said he has signage warning of the electrified fence.

 “Am I pissed off that I have to fork out to protect my premises - you bet I am,” Molloy told the Herald.

The young man who caused the $60k damage eventually handed himself to police and was dealt with by way of Leo Molloy-style justice.

“What was on offer from the judicial system, I didn’t think made him accountable for the damage, so [I] met with him and his parents and agreed for him to do 100 hours at Dave Letele’s BBM charity,” Molloy said.

CCTV image supplied by Leo Molloy of vandals damaging chattels and equipment at the Headquarters Bar in the Viaduct in March.

CCTV image supplied by Leo Molloy of vandals damaging chattels and equipment at the Headquarters Bar in the Viaduct in March.

“I met with the guy and his parents and expressed my dismay. Police agreed with my solution, and I introduced the guy to Dave Letele in person.”

Molloy received $45,000 in insurance to repair the roof but was still $15,000 out of pocket.

Electric fence on top of HQ Bar in Auckland's Viaduct Basin.

Electric fence on top of HQ Bar in Auckland's Viaduct Basin.

“To make sure that doesn’t happen again, I have paid for an electric fence that stops people who make it to the roof from going any further,” he said.

“There’s an electrified wire fence that goes around the roof and if you’re stupid enough to touch it, you’ll get a reality check.

“There are yellow signs stating this is an electric wire - beware.”

The voltage is 240 volts and can cause extreme muscle spasms.

HQ bar at Auckland's Viaduct. Photo / Supplied

HQ bar at Auckland's Viaduct. Photo / Supplied

“I don’t blame the police but since they moved premises to just out of the CBD, their lack of presence at the viaduct is felt,” he added.

“This is not the fault of police that there is late-night drinking around the viaduct by young guys doing damage.”

Mahesh Muralidhar. Photo / Supplied

Mahesh Muralidhar. Photo / Supplied

National candidate for Auckland City, Mahesh Muralidhar, said this type of behaviour by “young thugs” has to stop and if National wins the election he will demand a police hub back in downtown Auckland.

“We’ve spoken to over a hundred businesses, on how they feel in Auckland Central and criminality is all too common now. Drugs, ram raids, employees feeling unsafe. This has to stop,” Muralidhar said.

“Businesses and residents must feel safe in Auckland. I have spoken to Mark Mitchell about one police hub in downtown Auckland and ensuring police are seen out and about consistently.”

Joseph Los’e joined NZME in 2022 as Kaupapa Māori Editor. Los’e was a chief reporter, news director at the Sunday News newspaper covering crime, justice and sport. He was also editor of the NZ Truth and prior to joining NZME worked for 12 years for Te Whānau o Waipareira.

 

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