Whangārei gang member assaults children with his patch

A father used his Mangu Kaha gang patch to assault his sons.

WARNING: This article discusses family violence and may be upsetting to some readers.

A drunk father who caught his sons vaping used his gang patch to hit them while one of the boys attempted to protect his brother from the assault.

The 43-year-old, who cannot be named, arrived at his Otāngarei, Whangārei address on March 17 this year and began yelling about family matters and the Mangu Kaha gang, a splinter group of Black Power, which he belonged to.

Two of his sons became distressed and were crying in fear as the man stood over them.


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Using his patch, he hit one of the children in the upper body area.

He then leaned over and, using his patch again, hit the second boy in the shoulder.

The boy who took the hit to his upper body attempted to shield his brother but was kicked in the thigh by their father.

This week, the man appeared in the Whangārei District Court before Judge Philip Rzepecky for sentencing on two charges of assault on a child and one charge of breach of a protection order.


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His lawyer, John Moroney, said that for people with a background such as his client’s, “their lives are preordained and predetermined”.

“He came home and caught them vaping. He does not want his boys to be where he is,” Moroney said.

The defendant, who has been in custody for three and a half months, hoped to engage with family violence programmes once he was released, the court heard.

Judge Rzepecky said although the incident had been upsetting for the children, he advised the father to look to the future.

“I hope you can get through this and come out the other side and realise the potential and offers you have.

“You have strong family support here and work history; you have potential,” the judge said.

The man was jailed for eight months. He raised his fist in the air, the gang’s salute, as he was taken away to begin his sentence.

Shannon Pitman is a Whangārei based reporter for Open Justice covering courts in the Te Tai Tokerau region. She is of Ngāpuhi/Ngātiwai/Ngāti Pūkenga descent and has worked freelance in digital media for the past five years. She joined NZME in 2023.


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