Four Mongrel Mob members - two wearing patches - pushed their way inside a female meth dealer’s home, ransacked it and made off with cash and possessions before fleeing from police.
The group - including Hamiora Chase of the Kawerau Mongrel Mob chapter and three others from the Rogue, Barbarian MC and Aotearoa chapters - even took the hard drive containing CCTV footage of them as they ransacked the house.
Chase appeared in the Hamilton District Court on Monday after earlier admitting a reduced charge of burglary, down from aggravated burglary.
Court documents reveal Chase and his co-offenders turned up at the Ross Crescent home in Hamilton around 3.30pm on December 4, 2022 in two vehicles.
The occupants didn’t know the group.
Two members of the group went to the door and spoke with the female occupant, and initially had an amicable conversation about a previous debt.
One of the gang asked for cash, stating they needed it for petrol, and asked if they could talk inside - something the woman declined.
Chase then got out of the car and pushed past his co-offenders and the victim, followed shortly afterwards by another gang member.
The two others followed and began ransacking the house while three occupants locked themselves in a bedroom. A fourth managed to escape and call police.
The gang members kicked the bedroom door down and searched that room, too.
They eventually made off with a tablet, a silver watch, $42,000 in cash, a Nokia cellphone, an iPhone 13, a driver’s licence, keys, bank cards and a Samsung A03.
Police arrived at the scene just as they were leaving, and the group fled at high speed.
The two gang members who were wearing their patches had them seized by police and an order for destruction was sought.
Chase’s counsel Gerard Walsh said the woman had CCTV cameras operating as she was a meth dealer.
His client was now remorseful, and had emailed the judge a letter of remorse that morning, and added that if it wasn’t for his upbringing, he wouldn’t have been sitting in court that day.
Chase was now keen to change his ways as family members had started to pass away and he realised time with his children was a precious commodity.
Crown prosecutor James Lewis said there was no evidence the group was going to go into the home until Chase “barged in”.
Judge Noel Cocurullo was blunt in his assessment.
“This was a gang taxing ... and you were the first person to enter the house.
“You and others turned up on this day; they went to the door. Things were amicable ... it was you who barged through and went through the house.
“This had the hallmarks of a gang taxing,” he repeated, adding there was a large number of them and two were wearing patches.
While he was the first in the house, it could also be said that he was the last to go to the front door.
He agreed to give 15 per cent discount for his guilty plea, 10 per cent for the contents of his Section 27 report and 5 per cent for remorse.
That resulted in Chase being jailed for two years and five months.
Belinda Feek is an Open Justice reporter based in Waikato. She has worked at NZME for nine years and been a journalist for 20.
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