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Man on the run for 33 hours

Wednesday 28 June 2023 | Written by Joanne Holden | Published in Court, Crime, National


Man on the run for 33 hours
Teau Moana Tangi Taraiti. POLICE SERVICE / 23062618

An 18-year-old Cook Islands man who escaped from Police Headquarters has been recaptured after 33 hours on the run.

Teau Moana Tangi Taraiti was arrested at a house in Matavera at 7.20am on Tuesday, after he absconded from Police HQ in Avarua as officers were about to remand him in custody at 10.15pm on Sunday.

“Police had been receiving calls about someone being in their house,” Cook Islands Police Service spokesman Trevor Pit said.

“We got called this morning [Tuesday] that he was in a Matavera house. A CIB [Criminal Investigation Bureau] Detective in the area swiftly got to the house and grabbed him.”

Taraiti had been in contempt of court orders since June 19 when Police caught up with him on Sunday.

After his escape, Police put out a call for information regarding Taraiti’s whereabouts on social media, stating he was wanted for breaching his bail conditions and for questioning on a string of motorcycle thefts.

Having been found unlawfully in the Matavera house, Taraiti had since been remanded into prison.

Police were putting together new charges and “there is a range of offences being looked at” regarding the escape attempt, Pitt said.

Taraiti is already facing charges of attempted rape and unlawfully being found on a premises from alleged offending in late January.