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Lockdown breach

Students crossed Auckland border, self-isolating in Gisborne, Te Karaka.

Police have dealt with three university students from Auckland in the past 24 hours after they allegedly crossed the Level 4 border illegally to come back to Gisborne.

They were located yesterday at residences in Gisborne and Te Karaka.

Police said the trio had been self-isolating at their homes since they came to Gisborne on September 8.

“The fact they were in Gisborne only came to our attention yesterday after advice from a member of the public,” area police commander Inspector Sam Aberahama said.

“All three were tested for Covid-19 Delta prior to coming to Gisborne and were negative.

“Since then they have had no symptoms of the virus.”

Insp Aberahama said police were further investigating the matter.

“We have been speaking to the families of the two young men and young woman.

“We need to do due diligence on this matter before we consider further action, including the laying of charges against them.”

Insp Aberahama said they must be consistent with what’s going on throughout the rest of the country.

“We will not be making any firm determinations around charging these young people until we have completed our inquiry.”

Nationally, police have decisions to make about the Auckland couple who allegedly used essential worker status to breach the Auckland border to go skiing at Wanaka.

No charges have been laid against them at this point.

The couple came out publicly earlier this week and acknowledged their actions were wrong, and apologised to the New Zealand community.

Meanwhile, three Auckland essential workers have been arrested by police in Ohakune after travelling to Turoa Ski Field.

The trio were arrested after ski field staff became suspicious of the documentation they used to obtain a ski pass.

They travelled to Ohakune on Wednesday after using genuine essential worker passes allowing them to travel through the southern checkpoint.

Inspector Nigel Allan, the police area commander for Whanganui Ruapehu, said two 23-year-olds and an 18-year-old had been charged with failing to comply with a directions/restriction/prohibition (Covid-19) and taking/obtaining/using a document for pecuniary advantage.

The trio are to appear in Auckland District Court on September 23.

■ Hauroa Tairawhiti confirmed a visitor from Auckland was permitted into Gisborne Hospital last weekend.

“This visitor was permitted into the hospital under approved circumstances,” a Hauora Tairawhiti spokeswoman said.

“Strict precautions were taken, which included a risk assessment.”

An Auckland border checkpoint. New Zealand Herald file picture by Dean Purcell

  1. Ken Ovenden says:

    Name and shame, lay charges – showing no respect for anyone, why expect anything in return.

    1. Batman says:

      There is no need for you to know their names. There is no shame in coming home.
      It’s not your business to be judge and jury of people.
      We are not those people here in Gisborne, we are welcoming. More than be kind, be cool.

      1. Ken Ovenden says:

        Well then Batman, take off your mask, stop hiding behind comic strip characters. Use your real name.

  2. Rangi says:

    Jacinda’s 0800 narkline didn’t work very well then

  3. Rhondda says:

    If you break Level 4 for your own needs then you should be charged – all should be charged, not just some. It keeps being done because the police are being soft on some.

    1. Melissa, Auckland says:

      Kiwi’s are soft on Kiwi’s in general. There’s a pecking order based on political and family connections. Now that there’s no more tourists and immigrants to blame and throw the book at, the police and government are scratching their heads at who to throw under the bus to make it appear that they actually enforce rules across the board. Truth is NZ laws are a joke. Rapists and drug smugglers get off scot free everyday…too much bad behaviour has been protected for decades and you all know it. Too late to backtrack now. Got to start enforcing laws against the rich and powerful and set a real example.

  4. Concerned says:

    It looks like we are “those people” here in Gisborne. Privileged, not cool and not concerned about the greater good. Agree with Rangi, Rhondda and Ken – charges required

  5. Lara says:

    Have the other members of the households also been self isolating at home every day since these students fled Auckland to come home to Gisborne? I hope they are otherwise there is the potential for the virus to be circulating undetected in the region.

  6. Tania Barbarich says:

    Unacceptable and selfish. Level 4 is in place for a reason and Te Tairawhiti enjoys level 2 for a reason. Coming through lockdown levels places the whole process in danger of failure. People have foregone tangi for the cause and these people sneak in like rats under cover. We don’t need to know names but they need to be held accountable for their actions.

  7. Vicki Marama says:

    Throw the book at them. Their family’s must be super proud of them putting Tairawhiti lives at risk…

  8. Capt Kooza, Wairoa says:

    Sam should know better than to sit on the fence. Charge them as if they were Aucklander’s. Covid will decimate the East coast populace if it gets a footing.

  9. tui says:

    Any adult person who knowingly and physically breaches lockdown rules should be penalised through the judicial system. Police are exercising discretionary powers and powers of diversion. We should go beyond that. How do you reprimand three people for potentially creating risk to 50,000 people or an entire region?!

  10. Walter says:

    What a load of crap the whole lot of them should be penalised no matter what there can’t be one law for one and one law for the other, but money walks and bullshit talks. Those two that flew to Wanaka – he a horse breeder, and his girlfriend is a lawyer – they breached the law and used essential documents to feather their nest, there should be no pity for any of them.

  11. Gina says:

    Honestly, how did they get through the borders then? I mean 8 September that was still Level 4 up in Auckland wasn’t it? Therefore those borders would and should’ve been manned so how did they get through Sam Aberahama? I mean you’re “sitting on the fence” here so is there more to this than you’re letting on? Then again, we’ve got to wait and see what happens to Mr Equestrian and Miss Lawyer because if they can get off being fraudsters and runaways then these three could possibly do the same. Whether they are self isolating or not they burst our bubble here in Te Tairāwhiti and put the rest of us at risk and then what? Is that fair on us? We have done our part keeping within our bubbles and keeping our Whānau safe. What of these three selfish individuals? I mean to say, my daughters lived up in Auckland last year during the last Covid Level 4 Lockdown. One of them was a student too and I will say that she found it hard. She was staying at a student village which was harder and yes she wanted to come home, but she stuck at it and thank goodness she didn’t break her bubble!! And thank goodness she had FaceTime because that helped her cope. Whereas these three, negative results or not, have burst a whole region’s bubble. Needless to say they also burst the bubbles of other regions to come through get here.

    Don’t worry I understand why you wouldn’t have been able to cope because I learned all that from my daughter’s experience. But at least that I can say she didn’t bail when she wanted to. She showed resilience and strength whereas these three, what did they show?

  12. Melissa says:

    Build a wall around Tairawhiti and don’t let anyone in or out ever again. You all deserve each other.