Second woman admits role in burglary ring

April 13, 2018 | By More

A second woman who has admitted her role in an organised criminal group accused of burgling 110 homes has been told to be prepared for a prison term.

Elise Van Dam, 27, pleaded guilty to participating in the group, 10 charges of burglary, two charges of dishonestly using a document, possession of a pipe, and theft of a car.

The homes were burgled in Christchurch, Rangiora, and Kaiapoi during July 2017.

Police allege that the group traded significant amounts of the stolen property between each other and to other people. They also offered televisions, power tools, bikes, IPads, firearms, gold, and jewellery for sale.

On July 2 Van Dam and two alleged co-offenders broke into a house in Esher Place, St Martins, and took a laptop and camera, and a bankcard.

Later that day the bankcard was used at the Z Service Station on Brougham Street, and then at another Z Service Station on Ferry Road.

In the evening on that day another house was burgled in Vernon Terrace, Heathcote, and personal items including a laptop, camera, clothing, and a car were stolen. The car was later found on Avoca Valley Road where it had been set alight.

On the afternoon of July 4, Van Dam sat in a car while alleged co-offenders broke into a house in Fifield Terrace, Waltham. The alarms went off and everyone left without taking property, then she sat in the car again at another address in Flinders Road, Heathcote, where an iPad and a socket set were taken.

Another attempt at burglary in Major Hornbrook Road was stopped by the owner of the property.

Van Dam entered The Warehouse in South City on July 5, and used a stolen card to buy a mobile cell phone.

Cell phone data showed Van Dam was in the vicinity of a car which was taken with a large amount of work tools in it, in Rowses Road Rangiora on July 9.

On July 10, Van Dam sat in the car while a property was burgled in Gardiners Road, where a television and two laptops were taken. The offenders ransacked the house, and then took a car and drove off in it.

On July 13 a house in Whincops Road, Halswell was burgled, with a television, watched, DVD player, and personal items being taken. An SKB shotgun and ammunition were also stolen.

Two more burglaries occurred on July 15, in Horseshoe Lake Road, and Magnolia Boulevard in Kaiapoi.

Text messages from Van Dam told the alleged burglars that the neighbours were watching at the Kaiapoi  address.

On September 7, Van Dam was at the Christchurch Central Police station where they found a methamphetamine pipe in her handbag.

In Christchurch District Court, defence counsel Allister Davis said Van Dam had stopped taking methamphetamine, and had cleaned herself up.

Judge Jane Farish remanded Van Dam on bail for sentencing on July 18, and told her to be prepared that day because she would be sentenced to prison.

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