Auckland man charged after lying in an attempt to avoid gun buyback scheme

A 25-year-old Auckland man has been arrested and charged after claiming his prohibited firearms had been stolen in a false statement to police.

Police received a report of a burglary at a Coatesville property around 10pm on Thursday, 18 July. 

The man claimed his garage had been broken into and the burglars had stolen two guns - a 9mm pistol and a rifle - from his gun safe the previous night.

Following a scene examination and a number of enquiries, the man allegedly admitted to police that he had hidden the guns.

The officers subsequently discovered the pistol and rifle, alongside two other semi-automatic firearms, hidden in the ceiling cavity of the property's walk-in wardrobe, confirms Detective Senior Sergeant Nadene Richmond.

The man has been charged with making a false statement and is due to appear in North Shore District Court on Friday. It is likely he will face further firearms charges.

The guns have been seized and will be destroyed.

Sgt Richmond says the incident should serve as a reminder to those who attempt to avoid the prohibited guns buyback and amnesty scheme.

"The overwhelming majority of firearms holders have been doing the right thing under the new firearms legislation and we acknowledge their goodwill and cooperation," says Sgt Richmond.

"This prosecution also sends a message to the small minority who may choose not to comply - if they try to hide their firearms, they can face prosecution. The risk is not worth it."