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Police warning after arrests for covert filming

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Christchurch Police are warning Christmas shoppers to be on the alert for people covertly filming under females' skirts around local malls.

This follows a series of incidents over the past three weeks which have resulted in a number of arrests being made.

Detective Sergeant Craig Farrant says in the past three weeks Police have arrested four males over separate incidents in Eastgate shopping mall, Westfield Riccarton and the Eastgate Warehouse.

"Police have received reports of a number of instances where males have been seen covertly filming under females' skirts using a range of devices - from cell phones to covert camera systems," Detective Sergeant Farrant says.

The arrests have resulted in a large number of charges, which are currently being collated. The alleged offenders, aged between 30 and 55, have yet to appear in court.

In another case, a teacher is currently before the courts on charges relating to an incident at Westfield November.

"In all these cases, the victims are unknown to the offenders. Our concern is that once these images are captured there is no control over the potential use or distribution of the material."

With the Christmas rush happening and a large number of people around the city and in shopping centres and malls, Police are urging vigilance.

"It's extremely disappointing that we have to issue such warnings - but we do encourage women to remain vigilant while climbing stairs, using escalators or standing in close confined spaces with others, where they may be susceptible to such activity.

"This type of offending is taken extremely seriously and anyone caught offending in this manner can expect swift action from the Police, include arrest and court appearance."

Detective Sergeant Farrant says anyone who sees any suspicious activity of this type should contact Police or mall management immediately.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Christchurch police on (03) 3637400.

Alternatively, to provide information anonymously contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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