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Police’s Specialist Search Group are in attendance at Chartwell Shopping Centre in Hamilton where several home-made explosive devices were found this morning at around 7:20 am. A cordon remains in place around the shopping centre, which is closed.
“This has been extended to include the Lynden Court area, to keep the public safe,” said Police.
The Specialist Search Group is undertaking a comprehensive search of the shopping centre and surrounds, to ensure nothing of concern is left unnoticed. The New Zealand Defence Force Explosive Ordnance Disposal Team is also at the scene. This appears to be a targeted attempt at damaging an ATM, located on the exterior wall of the shopping centre at its southern end.
“Initial indications suggest two devices had already detonated before Police were notified, with damage contained to the ATM and immediate surrounds, with no injuries to any person. The focus of all in attendance is ensuring the safety of the public, and every care is being taken to ensure no further risk remains,” said Police.
Chartwell Shopping Centre said in a statement’ Stride Property advises that Chartwell Shopping Centre has been evacuated and the Centre closed while the New Zealand Police respond to the detection of explosive devices at the perimeter of the Centre.’
“Chartwell Shopping Centre management is cooperating with New Zealand Police on the matter, and the area has been cordoned off from the public including Hukanui Road, Lynden Court and Comries Road. Chartwell Shopping Centre treats the safety of its retailers, customers and the public as the utmost priority and will await further notice from the Police regarding reopening the Centre.”