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Attack on Indian cabbie vicious and frenzied: NZ police

February 02, 2010 17:09 IST

The vicious way in which an Indian taxi driver was murdered in New Zealand's Auckland city would shock even criminals, a senior police official said on Tuesday, as 40 officers stepped up their hunt for the elusive killer.

Hiren Mohini, 39, was killed early on Sunday in Auckland, one of the largest cities in New Zealand. Mohini's taxi collided with a tree in Mount Eden at approximately 1.20 am after he was allegedly stabbed by a passenger.

"I think this would shock anybody, even those from the criminal community," Detective Senior Sergeant Hywel Jones, investigating Mohini's murder, said.

He said the 'particularly vicious and frenzied' murder is now being investigated by 40 police officers.

"We are determined to solve this murder, and we will," Jones was quoted as saying by the New Zealand Herald.

He said the post-mortem examination had confirmed that Mohini died of several stab wounds and forensic experts were examining a knife at the scene, said to be the murder weapon.

Jones said they were examining security footage and the process was very time consuming. Investigating officers also plan to go door-to-door in the area and seek witnesses.

He said the police have received 'encouraging' calls to their hotline after they appealed to the public for information on the attack.

The police is looking for a man in his 20s, who was seen fleeing the scene. They are not ruling out the possibility of Mohini being attacked by more than one passenger.

Jones appealed to local residents to check their dustbins and sheds in case the assailant had taken anything or left anything behind.

"Clothing may have gone missing off clothes lines. If there's anything that may be of interest to the police then my investigation team will be keen to hear about that," Jones said.

Meanwhile, taxi federation executive director Tim Reddish said the group was appealing to members to make donations to the family.

Mohini has left behind a wife and two young daughters. Reddish said some members of Mohini's family were coming from India and the funeral was likely to be held this week.

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