STOLEN: Peter Audie Ankers stole two tow trucks from the company he worked for, The 1770 Towing Service.
STOLEN: Peter Audie Ankers stole two tow trucks from the company he worked for, The 1770 Towing Service. Craig Warhurst

Kiwi worker to be deported after rampage

CHEESED off and mad he had not been paid the money he believed was owed for cash-in-hand work, Peter Audie Ankers stole two tow trucks, a Harley Davidson motorcycle, shoes and household items from his boss.

On his angry rampage, Ankers assaulted two people including punching a woman to her face, and dumped a child's scooter in a bonfire.

Ankers, a convicted robber, will now be deported after he went before the District Court in Bundaberg to plead guilty to stealing, assault, and gun offences.

Following his arrest Ankers was detained by immigration authorities at Villawood detention centre in NSW as a result of prior convictions and jail sentences.

Ankers, 40, pleaded guilty to:

  • stealing the motorcycle, two rifles, shoes, tools, a radio, stereo speakers, a welder, clothing and household goods at Agnes Water on October 4;
  • unlawfully using a motor vehicle to commit offences;
  • entering the premises of The 1770 Towing Service with intent;
  • wilful damage to a pool table, homewares, vehicles, a bicycle and a scooter;
  • unlawful assault causing bodily harm at Agnes Water;
  • assault;
  • possession of two category-A weapons at Deception Bay; and
  • possession of ammunition.

Crown prosecutor Christopher Cook said Ankers was born in Auckland and had significant criminal history in Australia.

With his Australian visa cancelled, Ankers faces deportation to New Zealand.

Defence barrister Peter Richards said that Ankers should be released immediately to allow his deportation and be a burden to New Zealand taxpayers instead of Australians.

"This is a man who after he served a sentence for armed robberies stayed out of trouble," Mr Richards said.

Mr Cook said Ankers had a disagreement and claimed he was owed money which escalated when he went to The 1770 Towing Service premises.

Ankers took a tow truck and loaded it up with property. A second tow truck was on its rear tray and he drove away from the property.

Items damaged included cars, a child's bike and the scooter that Ankers threw on to a bonfire and destroyed.

Mr Cook said Ankers punched a man "multiple times in the head, to the face and jaw".

He said Ankers grabbed a woman attempting to stop the assault and told her "don't (you) f***en dare" then punched her in the face, injuring her.

The missing tow trucks were later found by police at Deception Bay.

Mr Richards said his client thought he was owed money by the company and "lost it", thinking he was justified in taking property.

He said Ankers was intelligent and capable and would transition to life in New Zealand.

"Apparently he will be on parole when he gets back there," he said.

Judge Anthony Rafter SC said Ankers had been sentenced for an aggravated sexual assault in NSW 20 years ago, and later for a wounding charge and the assault of a police officer.

He had been sentenced for manslaughter, and an unrelated malicious wounding.

On the Gold Coast he had been sentenced for four counts of armed robbery when in company.

Judge Rafter sentenced Ankers to three years jail, suspended for three years.

For the assault causing bodily harm he received a two years' jail - suspended for three years after the 126 days he has served, meaning he was immediately taken back into immigration custody for deportation.

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