A burglary in Christchurch culminated in Waianakarua after the alleged offenders were found hiding in long grass on Monday night.
The Dunedin dog squad and eight police officers arrested six people after they allegedly stole a car from Christchurch, drove it to Dunedin and then headed back towards Oamaru before being involved in a minor collision.
Oamaru Police Constable Mark Haythorne said a black Lexus Saloon was stolen during a burglary from a Christchurch address overnight on Sunday and was then involved in a petrol drive-off at the Z service station in Templeton at 4.30pm on Monday.
It was located later that night in North Otago, having travelled with a green Subaru to Dunedin and back towards Oamaru.
The owner of the green Subaru contacted police after a minor collision occurred between the two cars in Waianakarua, he said.
The green Subaru was located just north of Maheno at 10pm, with three occupants, and was impounded.
Police were given information that the occupants of the black Lexus were hiding at a Waianakarua address and the dog unit was called from Dunedin.
The vehicle was located and less than 40 minutes later, the three offenders were found hiding in long grass 50 metres from the address, Constable Haythorne said.
The driver of the green Subaru, an 18-year-old woman from Kumara, was charged with driving while suspended.
A 17-year-old female from Waianakarua was charged with obstructing and hindering police.
The rest, two 20-year-old men and a 19-year-old man, all from the West Coast, and an 18-year-old woman from Christchurch, were charged with unlawfully entering a motor vehicle.
Further charges are pending following the police investigation.
The six offenders appeared in the Dunedin District Court yesterday and have been remanded on bail to appear at a later date.
The stolen black Lexus is at a local panelbeaters awaiting forensic analysis. Once completed, it will be returned to its owner in Christchurch.
By RUBY HARFIELD