Hawke's Bay man charged with blackmail

Cheryl Sanders
September 1, 2016

The man will appear in the Hastings District Court today.

A 55-year-old man from Hawke's Bay has been arrested in relation to an investigation into threats received by a number of New Zealand companies.

Crown prosecutor Steve Manning asked for the "short-term" suppression of the companies' details so they could work with government agencies on a communications plan relating to the alleged blackmail attempt.

The arrest follows police carrying out a search warrant on a Napier house yesterday.

The judge agreed to release him on bail on the conditions that he report to police, not access the internet, surrender his passport and that he attend Napier health centre.

Detective Inspector Chris Cahill says the threats were received in July and the police decided not to go public about the case until now.

"This decision could have been reviewed at any stage if police had become aware of any new information which might have changed the risk assessment".

Police allege he blackmailed seven companies between August 9 and August 13 this year, but the names and nature of the companies has also been suppressed by the court.

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