Warrant for arrest for Marokopa fugitive Tom Phillips following aggravated robbery in Te Kuiti

A warrant to arrest has been issued for Marokopa fugitive Tom Phillips.

Police investigating an aggravated robbery in Te Kuiti from May issued the warrant on Tuesday.

Recent developments in their ongoing enquiries have led police to charge Phillips with aggravated robbery, aggravated wounding and unlawfully possessing a firearm.

Phillips has been on the run with his three young children Jayda, Maverick, and Ember for about 20 months. 

In May, police appealed for information after two people entered a bank on Rora Street, Te Kuiti, and allegedly demanded cash. 

Both were allegedly armed and fled the scene on a black, farm-style motorbike, Acting Detective Inspector Andrew Saunders said.

The other person involved is yet to be identified.

"Police have been seeking to speak with Mr Phillips for some time," Det Insp Saunders said.

"We have issued several appeals for information following sightings of Mr Phillips over the last couple of months."

In August, police released new details on recent sightings of Phillips. He had been seen at two Bunnings stores in Waikato.

Police said he used a large amount of cash and the items bought suggest he may have set up a campsite. These items include headlamps, batteries, seedlings, buckets, and gumboots.

The public is urged to report any sightings of Phillips to police on 111, quoting file number 230516/7295. Alternatively, you can contact Police via the dedicated email address op.curly@police.govt.nz.

The public is urged not to take action themselves since Phillips potentially still has firearms in his possession.

Det Insp Saunders said police are still concerned about the welfare of his children, who were officially reported as missing in December 2021.