Second Man Nabbed Over Spate of Armed Hold-Ups In The Hunter

A second man’s been charged as investigations continue into the armed robbery of a hotel in the state’s Hunter region earlier this month.

About 12.20am on Tuesday 25 January 2022, two masked men – one armed with a handgun and the other with a meat clever – entered a licensed premises on Main Road at Cardiff and threatened two employees, a man and woman aged 52 and 25, before taking a cash register and fleeing.

Police were told they left in a blue Ford Falcon sedan, last seen heading east on Main Street.

Although shaken, the employees were not injured and contacted police.

Initial inquiries were conducted by officers attached to Lake Macquarie Police District, before the matter was referred to detectives from the State Crime Command’s Robbery and Serious Crime Squad under Strike Force Hawksview.

So far, strike force detectives have charged a 32-year-old man for his alleged role in the incident. He remains before the courts.

Following further inquiries, Tactical Operations Unit officers – assisted by local police and the Tactical Operations Regional Support Unit – arrested a 33-year-old man at a Mayfield property just after 6.30pm on Sunday.

A short time later investigators executed a search warrant at that address, as well as at a second home on Woodstock Street.

During those searches, police seized electronic items and clothing for forensic analysis.

The man was taken to Newcastle Police Station and charged with seven offences, including two counts of robbery while armed with dangerous weapon, two counts of possess unauthorised pistol, two counts of acquire firearm – subject to prohibition order, and reckless grievous bodily harm.

It will be alleged in court he was one of two men responsible for the robbery of a hotel in Cardiff last week.

It’s further alleged he was additionally involved in the armed robbery of licenced premises on Fullerton Street at Stockton just before 10pm on Tuesday 28 December 2021. During this incident, a 35-year-old man – who was an employee of the hotel – was allegedly knocked unconscious with a firearm, while two colleagues were threatened with the weapon then ordered to hand over cash, before the man fled.

The employee was taken to John Hunter Hospital for treatment to significant facial injuries including a broken jaw and numerous damaged teeth, and is receiving ongoing treatment. Inquiries to locate two other men involved in that incident continue.

The Mayfield man was refused bail to appear at Newcastle Local Court today.