Hotel thief targeted Lions in NZ - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Hotel thief targeted Lions in NZ

07/04/2009 07:20:02 PM Comments (0)

A Hamilton hotel staff member has been arrested after visiting South African Super 14 rugby players had their rooms raided and possessions stolen.

The Lions had lost their match against the local Chiefs team on Saturday and returned to their hotel to find some of the players' rooms had been looted, police said.

However, Detective Sergeant Dave Grace said fast work by police "saw the final whistle blown on the thief".

Mr Grace said within an hour of being notified of the break-in police were at the suspect's home with a search warrant.

"A hotel staff member was identified as the person responsible for the theft and a search of his home resulted in the majority of items being recovered," he said.

Mr Grace praised hotel management for their cooperation in the matter.

"We were able to effect a quick arrest in this case owing to the hotel's existing security procedures and the management's relationship with police."

Mr Grace said when the Lions players heard about the arrest they had moved on to Auckland to prepare for their next match.

He said they were pleased to hear the news and impressed with the quick police response.

"We will return the team's possessions over the next couple of days and we hope the prompt arrest of the thief goes some way to allaying any concerns they may have about Hamilton as a place to visit."

A 23-year-old Hamilton student was bailed on a charge of burglary and further charges were likely.

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