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PNG Post-Courier

Papua New Guinea police have warned the public to take precaution with criminals now operating in large numbers in some suburbs of the second city Lae after an attack on University of Technology students.

Metropolitan police commander Chief Superintendent Chris Kunyanban issued the warning following the attack on Unitech when more than 30 armed criminals entered the female dormitory and robbed the students.

He warned such crimes were taking place at particular areas of Igam block, Stone Gat and East and West Taraka.

“These are the areas that criminals are operating in large numbers to steal small things such as household items to breaking and entering a store,” Chief Superintendent Kunyanban said.

According to police reports, the criminals stole mainly personal belongings such as laptops, phones and bags.

A female student was injured during the robbery when she tried to scream for help.

The student was admitted to hospital and police are continuing investigation.

‘Serious security breach’
“It is a serious security breach and the institution must be very considerate with the safety of its students, especially with female students or employees living in the campus,” Chief Superintendent Kunyanban said.

“Security should be sufficient to guarantee the students’ safety.”

He said police investigations were still underway to determine what really happened and how many things were stolen.

“It is also dangerous when you have a large number of people going around causing damage in the communities because the impact can be great and people can get injured like the recent incident,” he said.

Chief Supt Kunyanban said security measures on campus were internal matters of the institution.

According to police, more than 30 criminals went into the dormitory on early Friday morning and held up the students.

A student victim, who requested anonymity, said there were more than 10 men who broke into her room as she could not count.

‘Pointed guns at me’
“They pointed guns at me and were asking for my laptop,” she said.

She described the guns as brand new and almost all of the men had one.

“We couldn’t scream or call for help as we had guns pointed at us,” she said.

“One of the burglars asked for my phone and I told him that it was outside and he hit me on my side with a crowbar.”

She said the Uniforce arrived about 20 minutes later.

Men from the staff residential area arrived earlier and tried to pursue the robbers but without success.

Republished with permission.

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