From the Dominion Post 14th June 2004
If Lausii Taualupe had listened to his mother he would now not be in prison, he was told by a Wellington District Court judge. He was one of two teenagers jailed for a street robbery late last week only months after they were given community-based sentences for a similar offence. Taualupe, 19, student of Newtown and Johnny Dang, 18, unemployed of Newtown had pleaded guilty to two charges of robbery on February 7. Wellington District Court judge Bridget Mackintosh said they and a third man, Kyle Downes, 17, student of Island Bay who has pleaded guilty to assault, were in Manners St with many other teenagers on a Saturday night.
When two other teenagers got smart to them, Taualupe led them down Lombard Lane and told the other two to mug them. Judge Mackintosh said the two victims were punched and had their wallets and other items taken. They both managed to run away. She said Taualupe had a history of violent offending and was the ringleader of the group. He had a supportive mother who had told him not to go into town the night of the incident. "You should have listened to your mother ... look where you are today," the judge said to him. Dang lacked motivation to address any of his problems, the judge said. The pair had been sentenced to community work on a charge of assault with intent to injure earlier in the year.
Judge Mackintosh said it was not enough to just cancel the sentence. They would have to have some jail time added to their sentences. She jailed Taualupe for 18 months for the robbery and added a month for the earlier charge. Dang was sentenced to 11 months' jail with two months added. The third offender, Downes, she sentenced to 40 hours' community work for taking part in the assaults on the victims. The judge told Downes he could expect to end up in jail like his friends if he did not choose his company carefully. They were also ordered to pay $65.60 in reparation each. Lawyer for Taualupe, Dale La Hood, said his mother could not control him and he now had an unenviable list of previous convictions. He said while Taualupe had potential, he had been affected by being rejected by his natural father.
Date of Birth
Robbery of two teenagers in Wellington in February 2004
Was subject to a community work sentence at the time
Extensive history of violence as well
Dark Syde / Black Power
Sentenced to eighteen months in June 2004
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