MAIN PICTURE: An image from CCTV footage of the armed robbery of a Banora Point video store on January 28.BELOW LEFT: How The Northern Star broke the news of the fourth armed robbery in our region.
MAIN PICTURE: An image from CCTV footage of the armed robbery of a Banora Point video store on January 28.BELOW LEFT: How The Northern Star broke the news of the fourth armed robbery in our region.

Two held on armed rob charges

THE man police allege held up South Lismore's Station Hotel and the Southern Cross Credit Union at Casino was wanted in four states when he was arrested on Thursday night.

Richmond Local Area Command crime manager, Detective Inspector Greg Moore said Matthew Pirani, 24 of no fixed address was arrested along with his co-accused, Matthew Green, 34, of Woodenbong at a motel in the Newcastle suburb of Adamstown.

Det Insp Moore said police understand Pirani was also wanted on arrest warrants in Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia.

Police allege Pirani and Green were connected with five armed robberies across the Northern Rivers since January 22.

"Officers from Richmond and Tweed Byron Local Area Commands, as well as State Crime Command's Robbery and Serious Crime Squad established Strike Force McLymont to investigate a string of armed robberies that occurred on the Far North Coast in late January and early February," he said.

"At about 6.20pm on Thursday Strike Force McLymont investigators were successful in arresting a 24-year-old male and a 34-year-old male."

Det Insp Moore said the men were charged in relation to five armed robbery offences.

Police allege Pirani held up the Subway sandwich store on Ballina Rd, Lismore using a knife on January 22.

Four days later it is alleged he struck again, this time using a black semi-automatic pistol to rob a Banora Point takeaway shop.

On January 28, Green was allegedly captured on CCTV holding up a Banora Point video store at gunpoint.

Then at about 8.30pm on January 31 it is alleged Pirani held up South Lismore's Station Hotel at gunpoint.

Four days later police allege Pirani held up the Southern Cross Credit Union with a black pistol.

Pirani was also charged with possessing an unregistered gun after a semi-automatic pistol was allegedly located in a motor vehicle at the time of the arrest.

Green was charged with five counts of concealing a serious offence.

Both were refused bail.



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