Youth arrested over stolen goods
AN ‘ALADDIN’S cave of treasure’ from a series of local break-ins was recovered by police at a Goonellabah house on Friday.
Investigators were executing a search warrant at the address following a spate of break-ins in the area when they discovered the haul.
While some property has been identified and returned to owners, a considerable quantity, including a motor cycle, remains unclaimed.
A 16-year-old youth, who cannot be identified, was arrested and charged for a range of offences including break, enter and steal; goods in custody; and malicious damage.
He appeared in Lismore Children’s Court on Saturday and was remanded in custody.
Richmond Local Area Command crime manager, Detective Inspector Greg Moore said police were surprised at the extent of the haul and have issued a partial list of the items in the hope of finding the rightful owners.
“It’s a bit of an Aladdin’s cave of property recovered up there,” he said.
“We’ve been successful in identifying owners (for some property) and linking it back to recent break and enters.
“Unfortunately there has been some property that we haven’t been able to trace – we are hoping some of the owners may be able to come forward and identify some of that property.
Det Insp Moore said deliberate damage carried out during many of the break-ins added a worrying element to the crimes.
“There have been a number of incidents where tomato sauce has been tipped throughout premises, or holes punched in (plasterboard) walls for example.
“Any break and enter is obviously an invasion of that person’s privacy, but to have these type of incidents is disturbing and is just rubbing victim’s noses in it.
“As a result of the spate of break and enters in that area we are investigating all of those matters and we’re hoping to identify offenders and put them before the courts.
Det Insp Moore added that the age of the offender arrested on Friday was a worry – but it was not uncommon these days.
“It is certainly something we are looking at and are addressing through various means,” he said.
“We have investigators out there charging offenders but we also have our youth liaison police and our PCYC staff to try and engage kids who might be at a fork in the road and look like going down a wayward track.”
Richmond Local Area Command crime prevention manager, Senior Constable Michael Hogan, said police now faced the difficult task of identifying the owners of the unclaimed property.
“It’s important that people get serial numbers and even photographs (of their valuables) so we know what we’re looking for and who to return it to,” he said.
“If we can’t find the owners it will go to auction and the Government will get the money.”
Snr Con Hogan said it appeared some of the thefts had not been reported, which made it more difficult for police to resolve the crimes.
Anyone with information on the robberies, or recognise any of the goods, should contact Lismore police on 66260599 0r Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
Some of the property recovered:
Zongshen brand motor cycle
2 Portable DVD players
Motorcycle wheels and tyres
Large industrial Pneumatic rattle gun
2 laptop computers
Flat Screen Computer Monitor and computer
42" Sony LCD Television
Water filter and chiller
Several fishing rods
Sub-woofer speaker box
Sony video camera