Police arrest another person allegedly helping Sofitel shooting gang member evade officers

The Head Hunters member is still on the run.
The Head Hunters member is still on the run. Photo credit: Police.

Officers have arrested a man believed to be assisting a gang member wanted in connection to last month's Auckland Sofitel Hotel shooting evade police.

Detective Inspector John Sutton says a man linked to patched Head Hunters gang member Hone Reihana, 27, was stopped in a motor vehicle on Saturday night south of Kawakawa in the Bay of Islands.

Reihana, who also uses the name Hone Hawira, is currently on the run from police after being identified as a person of interest in the shooting at Auckland's Sofitel Hotel in April. He is considered dangerous and should not be approached.

The man stopped on Saturday is said by Det Insp Sutton to be believed to have been assisting Reihana evade police.

"As a result, a 31-year-old Northland man was arrested and will appear in the Whangarei District Court on Monday also charged with being an accessory after the fact," said Det Insp Sutton.

"Anyone who sees Hone Reihana is asked to contact Police immediately by phoning 111."

Police announced earlier on Saturday that a 25-year-old woman also thought to be assisting Reihana evade arrest had been arrested on Friday night after an incident involving Reihana in Northland. She appeared in the Whangarei District Court on Saturday morning charged with being an accessory after the fact.

It's said Reihana will likely face further charges as a result of Friday's incident. 

The Armed Offenders Squad was called to the downtown Auckland luxury hotel on April 15 after a shot was fired. Not long after, officers rushed to a property in the Auckland suburb of Ōrākei, blocking roads and putting a local marae into lockdown. No one was injured in the incidents. 

Police have confirmed the hotel incident involved individuals from the Head Hunters and Mongols gangs, and "relates to ongoing issues between individuals who are members of those gangs". The gangs were also involved in two other incidents in Auckland that week. 

Det Insp Sutton said at the time that police are sending a strong warning to the gangs "regarding this reckless, dangerous and unlawful behaviour". 

"While nobody was injured in this incident, what we saw at the Sofitel [in April] was extremely concerning. Members of the public were present and their safety was put at risk," he said.

"Police will not tolerate these crimes and we have a large team working around the clock to ensure we identify and arrest all of those involved."

Anyone with further information that may assist police enquiries is asked to contact (09) 477 5221 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. Police repeat the warning that anyone found to be assisting Reihana in evading police could find themselves liable for prosecution.