8 arrested over death of Whanganui shooting victim Kevin Ratana

Eight people have been arrested over the homicide of 27-year-old Kevin Ratana in Whanganui.

The 27-year-old, who was a Mongrel Mob member, was shot dead in his home in Castlecliff last Tuesday morning. Police say the Mr Ratana and offenders were known to one another and police.

"The group arrested yesterday are facing a number of charges including threatening to kill, unlawful possession of ammunition and participation in an organised crime group," says Detective Inspector Ross McKay.

"As the homicide investigation continues we expect to lay further charges."

There has been an unofficial truce between warring gangs, according to residents in the area, and they fear that this incident could spark tensions between them again.

Whanganui Area Commander Nigel Allan estimates around 100 gang members have arrived in the city for Mr Ratana's tangi, and there would be "high visibility policing" over the next few days.

There have been no reported incidents, but Commander Allan said a presence is necessary to try to prevent any further tension between gangs and to reassure the community.

"We have a capability here in the city, if something does happen we'll be able to respond appropriately."


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