Wednesday, July 21, 2021
The Patriarca crime family, also known as the New England Mafia, the Boston Mafia, the Providence Mafia, or The Office, is an Italian-American Mafia family in New England. It has two distinct factions, one based in Providence, Rhode Island, and the other in Boston, Massachusetts. The family is currently led by Carmen "The Cheese Man" Dinunzio, who is part of the Boston faction. The family is active primarily in Massachusetts, Rhode Island and parts of Connecticut. History- Early years: Two separate Mafia families emerged in New England before the start of Prohibition – one based in Boston, Massachusetts and the other based in Providence, Rhode Island. The Boston crime family was founded in 1916 by Gaspare Messina. Frank Morelli formed the Providence family in 1917, and he eventually controlled bootlegging and illegal gambling operations in Providence, Maine, and Connecticut. In 1924, Gaspare Messina stepped down as Boston's Mafia boss, assuming a businessman's role while working with Frank Cucchiara and Paolo Pagnotta from a grocery store on Prince Street in Boston's North End. A Mafia power struggle ensued in Boston, as rival gangs fought for illegal gambling, bootlegging, and loan sharking rackets, and East Boston mobster Filippo Buccola emerged as the boss of the Boston family. In December 1930 or early 1931, a Mafia meeting was held and Messina was elected the temporary capo dei capi of the American Mafia. He retired from Mafia affairs in the early 1930s and died in June 1957 in his Somerville, Massachusetts home. During the early 1930s, Buccola battled other ethnic gangs for territory in Boston, along with his underboss Joseph Lombardo, another mobster from the North End. In December 1931, Lombardo arranged the murder of Frank Wallace, the boss of South Boston's Irish Gustin Gang. Then in 1932, Morelli merged his Providence family with Buccola's Boston family, forming the New England crime family. Buccola ruled as boss of the combined family from East Boston as he continued to fatally dispatch his competition. After the murder of Jewish mob boss Charles "King" Solomon at Buccola's command, Buccola became the most powerful gangster in Boston. On April 27, 1952, Buccola held a party in Johnston, Rhode Island, to celebrate his retirement and Raymond Patriarca's ascension to boss of the family. He retired to Sicily in 1954, where he ran a chicken farm. He died in 1987 of natural causes at the age of 101. Patriarca era: In 1956, Patriarca made drastic changes in the family, the biggest being the relocation of their base of operations to Providence, using the National Cigarette Service Company and Coin-O-Matic Distributors, a vending machine and pinball business on Atwells Avenue, as a front organization. The business was known to family members as "The Office." Patriarca was a strict and ruthless leader; he ran the family for decades and made it clear that other Mafia organizations were not permitted to operate in New England. He was skilled at warding off police and maintaining a low profile, thus receiving little hindrance from law enforcement. The family ventured into new rackets such as pornography and narcotics, though mob informer Vincent Teresa insisted that Patriarca forbade the family to deal in drugs. During his reign as boss, Patriarca formed strong relationships with the New York-based Genovese crime family and Colombo crime family, deciding that the Connecticut River would be the dividing line between their territory and his own. His long-time underboss, Enrico Tameleo, was also a member of New York's Bonanno crime family. The New England family controlled organized crime in Boston and Worcester, Massachusetts, where Genovese capo Carlo Mastrototaro reigned as local boss for half a century, as well as the state of Maine; while the Genovese family controlled organized crime in Hartford, Connecticut, Springfield, Massachusetts, and Albany, New York. In addition to having close ties to the powerful Five Families, Patriarca also sat on the Commission and had investments in two Las Vegas casinos. Another of his underbosses, Gennaro "Jerry" Angiulo, was involved in the numbers racket in Boston, and was being shaken down by rival mobsters because he was not a "made" member. Angiulo solved this problem by paying Patriarca $50,000 and agreeing to pay him $100,000 a year to become a made member of the family. Angiulo gained complete control of gambling in Boston. The Apalachin Meeting and aftermath: In 1957, more than sixty of the country's most powerful Mafia bosses, including Joe Bonanno, Carlo Gambino, and Vito Genovese, met in Apalachin, a hamlet in upstate New York. Patriarca was also in attendance and was subsequently arrested when the meeting was suddenly raided by police, drawing much attention to him from the press, the public, and law enforcement. The situation became worse for Patriarca in 1961, when U.S. Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy began an assault on organized crime. Law enforcement agencies worked to develop informants within the Mafia and finally succeeded in 1966, when Joe Barboza, a Patriarca family hitman, was arrested on a concealed weapons charge. Barboza claimed to have killed 26 people, but became concerned when Patriarca did not raise his bail and two of his friends were killed for trying to do so. He soon decided to turn informant. Based on Barboza's testimony, Patriarca and Enrico Tameleo were indicted in 1967 for the murder of Providence bookmaker Willie Marfeo. Patriarca was convicted and began serving time in 1969, and Angiulo served as acting boss. Patriarca resumed control of the family after his release from prison in 1974. For his testimony, Barboza was given a one-year prison term, including time served. He was paroled in March 1969 and told to leave Massachusetts permanently. In 1971, he pleaded guilty to a second-degree murder charge in California and sentenced to five years at Folsom Prison; he was murdered in San Francisco by Joseph "J. R." Russo on February 11, 1976, less than three months after his release. Patriarca was plagued by law enforcement for the rest of his life, and he was charged numerous times for a variety of crimes until his death. In 1978, Vincent Teresa testified that Patriarca had participated in a 1960 attempt by the Central Intelligence Agency to kill Fidel Castro that was never carried out. In 1983, Patriarca was charged with the murder of Raymond Curcio, and he was arrested in 1984 for the murder of Robert Candos, whom Patriarca believed was an informant. Patriarca died of a heart attack on July 11, 1984, aged 76. Decline: After Patriarca's death, the New England family began a long period of decline, resulting from both legal prosecution and internal violence. Angiulo attempted to take over as boss from behind bars, while Larry Zannino, the family's top lieutenant, backed Patriarca's son Raymond Patriarca, Jr. for the position. The Commission approved Patriarca, Jr.'s ascendancy to leadership and his position was confirmed. Zannino was made consigliere, but he was sentenced to thirty years in prison in 1987. Angiulo was sentenced to 45 years in prison on racketeering charges. Other senior members died or were imprisoned, such as Henry Tameleo and Francesco Intiso. William "The Wild Man" Grasso, an East Hartford-based gangster, became underboss because of the younger Patriarca's weak leadership. Some investigators believed that Grasso was actually in charge, but these rumors ended when Grasso was found dead in June 1989, slain by a gangster from Springfield as factions of the family began fighting each other for dominance. Grasso's murder weakened Patriarca, Jr.'s position. Nicholas Bianco was eventually indicted for the murder, but he became acting underboss before taking over the family's Providence operations. On March 26, 1990, Patriarca, Jr. and twenty other family members and associates were indicted on charges of racketeering, extortion, narcotics, gambling, and murder. The indictments included underboss Bianco, consigliere Joseph Russo, and lieutenants Biagio DiGiacomo, Vincent Ferrara, Matthew Guglielmetti, Joseph A. Tiberi Sr, Dennis Lepore, Gaetano J. Milano, Jack Johns, John "Sonny" Castagna, Louis Fallia, Frank and Louis Pugliono, Frank Colontoni and Robert Carrozza. The arrests were described as "the most sweeping attack ever launched on a single organized crime family." One of the most damaging pieces of evidence was a tape recording of a Mafia induction ceremony, at which thirteen mafiosi were present. Because of this embarrassment, Patriarca was replaced as boss by Bianco, who maintained a very low profile. However, Bianco was sentenced to eleven years in prison in 1991, while eight other family members were convicted on Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) charges. Bianco died in prison in 1994. On January 6, 1992, all of the defendants in the RICO trial pleaded guilty and received lengthy sentences and large fines. Patriarca, Jr. was sentenced to eight years in prison in June 1992 after pleading guilty to racketeering charges. In 1993, 26 others were indicted and convicted for running a bookmaking operation. Internal warfare: Frank Salemme took over the family after the RICO trial and moved their base back to Boston. His ascension to the position of boss, however, sparked tensions among family factions. On March 31, 1994, Patriarca soldiers Ronald Coppola and Pete Scarpellini were shot and killed at a social club in Cranston, Rhode Island, by another Patriarca soldier, Nino Cucinotta, during a card game. On October 20, 1994, Joe Souza was shot inside an East Boston phone booth on October 20, 1994, dying from his injuries at the hospital on October 31. On December 11, 1994, 25-year old drug dealer and Salemme loyalist Paul Strazzulla was shot and killed, his body recovered inside of his fire-torched car in Revere, Massachusetts. In January 1995, Salemme was indicted along with Stephen Flemmi and James "Whitey" Bulger on extortion and racketeering charges, and Salemme discovered through court documents that his close allies Flemmi and Bulger were long-time FBI informants. Bulger's friend, FBI agent John Connolly, let him run his criminal operations with impunity for informing on the Patriarca family. After Salemme was imprisoned, a renegade faction led by Robert F. Carrozza, Anthony Ciampi, Stephen Foye, and Michael P. Romano, Sr. waged war on the Salemme faction. On April 3, 1996, 63-year old Richard "Vinnie the Pig" DeVincent is shot and killed in Medford, Massachusetts, after refusing to pay street tax from Salemme loyalists. In April 1997, the FBI indicted fifteen members of the renegade faction, including Carrozza, Ciampi, Romano, and others. The grand jury testimony that resulted in the indictments was dominated by Sean Thomas Cote, who was the first of four indicted members to turn state's evidence. The jury ultimately acquitted the defendants of most charges but was deadlocked on murder and racketeering charges. Following Salemme's indictment, Providence family member Luigi "Baby Shacks" Manocchio took control of the family. Several of the defendants changed their pleas to guilty during a second trial, including Ciampi and Eugene Rida. Salemme pleaded guilty to racketeering charges on December 9, 1999, and was sentenced to eleven years in prison on February 23, 2000. In early 2001, he agreed to testify against Flemmi and Bulger. Turn of the century: The New England family is estimated to have about sixty made members active in the New England area, especially in the cities of Boston and Providence. In recent years, the family has been hit with several RICO indictments, and two capos (Mark Rossetti and Robert DeLuca) have become government informants. The power structure was said to have moved back to Boston entering the 2010s. Peter "Chief Crazy Horse" Limone took over as boss of the family in 2009. Limone was arrested that year and charged with racketeering; he was given a suspended sentence on July 1, 2010. Retired boss Luigi "Baby Shacks" Manocchio was arrested in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on January 19, 2011, and was charged with extortion and conspiracy. Manocchio had stepped down as boss in 2009, after the FBI began investigating two strip clubs in late 2008. In February 2012, Manocchio agreed to plead guilty and was sentenced to 5½ years in prison for extortion on May 11, 2012. In late 2009, Anthony DiNunzio became the acting boss after Limone's arrest. DiNunzio operates from Boston's North End and is the younger brother to Carmen DiNunzio. In 2010, DiNunzio extorted Rhode Island strip clubs with members of the Gambino crime family. On April 25, 2012, DiNunzio was arrested and charged with racketeering and extortion. On September 13, 2012, DiNunzio pleaded guilty to shaking down Rhode Island strip clubs. and was sentenced to six years on November 14, 2012. On October 2, 2014, acting boss Antonio L. "Spucky" Spagnolo, 72, and reputed made man Pryce "Stretch" Quintina, 74, were arrested for allegedly extorting thousands of dollars in protection payments from a video poker machine company, which installed machines for illegal gambling in bars and social clubs. Spagnolo took over as acting boss after DiNunzio was arrested back in 2012. Both Spagnolo and Quintina are reputedly old members of the Patriarca crime family's Boston faction. In April 2016, family consigliere Anthony "Ponytail Tony" Parillo was sentenced to five-year prison term for felony assault. Underboss Carmen DiNunzio is said to be controlling the family. Historical leadership: Boss (official and acting) (excluding Frank Morelli 1) -1916–1924 — Gaspare Messina — stepped down, died in 1957 Boston -1924–1954 — Filippo "Phil" Buccola — united both families in 1932, retired, died in 1987 Boston -1954–1984 — Raymond L.S. Patriarca, Sr. — imprisoned in 1970, died on July 11, 1984 Providence -1984–1991 — Raymond "Junior" Patriarca, Jr. — stepped down in 1991 Providence -1991 — Nicholas "Nicky" Bianco — imprisoned on December 28, 1991 and died on December 14, 1994 Providence -1991–1996 — Frank "Cadillac Frank" Salemme — jailed in 1995, turned government witness Boston -Acting 1995–1996 — John "Jackie" Salemme — brother to Frank Salemme; jailed Boston -1996–2009 — Luigi "Baby Shacks" Manocchio — stepped down, imprisoned Providence -2009–2016 — Peter "Chief Crazy Horse" Limone — died June 19, 2017 Boston -Acting 2009–2012 — Anthony L. DiNunzio — arrested on April 25, 2012 Boston -Acting 2012–2015 — Antonio L. "Spucky" Spagnolo — arrested on October 2, 2014 Boston -Acting 2015–2016 — Carmen "The Big Cheese" Dinunzio Boston -2016–present — Carmen "The Big Cheese" Dinunzio Boston Notes 1. Frank Morelli was the first boss of the Providence crime family from 1917 to 1932 when he stepped down, becoming Underboss to Buccola Underboss (official and acting): -c. 1920–1932 — Joseph "J.L." Lombardo—became consigliere Boston -1932–1947 — Frank "Butsey" Morelli—retired Providence -1947–1954 — Raymond L. S. Patriarca, Sr.—promoted to boss Providence -1954–1967 — Enrico "Henry the Referee" Tameleo—imprisoned for life in 1968, died 1985 Boston -1967–1984 — Gennaro "Jerry" Angiulo—imprisoned in 1983, died 2009 Boston -1984–1985 — Francesco "Paul" Intiso—died -1985–1989 — William "The Wild Man" Grasso—murdered -1989–1991 — Nicholas "Nicky" Bianco—promoted to boss Providence -1991 — Frank "Cadillac Frank" Salemme—promoted to boss Boston -1991–1996 — Robert DeLuca—imprisoned Providence -Acting 1996 — Luigi "Baby Shacks" Manocchio—promoted to boss Providence -1996–2004 — Alexander Santoro "Sonny Boy" Rizzo—imprisoned in 1995–1998 Boston -2004–2015 — Carmen S. "The Cheese Man" DiNunzio Boston—promoted to acting boss -Acting 2008–2009 — Peter "Chief Crazy Horse" Limone—promoted to boss Boston -Acting 2009–2011 — Robert "Bobby The Cigar" DeLuca—turned government witness Providence -2015–present — Matthew "Goodlooking Matty" Guglielmetti Providence Consigliere: -1932–1954 — Joseph "J.L." Lombardo—retired, died on July 17, 1969 Boston -1954–1976 — Frank "the Cheeseman" Cucchiara—committed suicide on January 23, 1976 Boston -1976–1984 — Nicolo "Nicky" Angiulo—demoted, died 1987 Boston -1984–1987 — Ilario "Larry Baiona" Zannino—imprisoned in 1985, died 1996 Boston -1987–1992 — Joseph "J.R." Russo—imprisoned in 1990, died 1998 Boston -1992–1998 — Charles "Cue Ball" Quintana—imprisoned in 1998 Boston -1998–2002 — Rocco "Shaky" Argenti —died Providence -2003–2009 — Peter "Chief Crazy Horse" Limone—promoted to Boss Boston -2009–2015 — Anthony "Ponytail Tony" Parillo—imprisoned Providence -2016–2018 — Joseph "Joe the Bishop" Achille—died Providence Current family members: Administration: -Boss – Carmen S. "The Cheese Man" DiNunzio – took over after "Spucky" Spagnolo was indicted and became official boss after Peter Limone died. DiNunzio is an East Boston mobster indicted in 2008 on corruption charges stemming from an undercover operation. He pled guilty to bribery charges and was sentenced to six years in prison on September 24, 2009. He was released on parole in February 2015. -Underboss – Matthew L. "Goodlooking Matty" Guglielmetti Jr. – was sentenced to 11 years in prison in 2005 for "protecting" a shipment of cocaine passing through Rhode Island. He was also arrested that year for infiltrating labor unions in greater-Providence. On June 10, 2014 Guglielmetti was released from prison. Since his release from prison Guglielmetti has been working with Philadelphia crime family capo George Borgesi. -Consigliere – Unknown, following death of Providence-based consigliere Joseph "Joe the Bishop" Achille. Capos Providence faction: -Edward "Eddie" Lato: Lato served an eight-year sentence in federal prison for shaking down Rhode Island strip clubs for protection money. He was arrested with former bosses Anthony DiNunzio and Luigi "Baby Shacks" Manocchio. -Joseph Ruggiero: Ruggiero has never been charged with a crime and runs his day-to-day operations out of a series of legitimate businesses that he owns in and around Fall River, Massachusetts. He is also a close friend of former Fall River mayor William Flanagan. -Anthony "Ponytail Tony" Parillo: Parillo is now doing a 15-year prison stint for felony assault. He previously served 11 years for a double homicide that he committed in 1977. -Acting: Unknown Boston faction: -Gregory "Fat Boy" Costa -Frederick "Freddie the Neighbor" Simone -Antonio "Spucky" Spagnolo Soldiers: -William "Billy Blackjack" DelSanto (former Capo—semi-retired)—Providence Faction -Guido Pettinato-Providence faction -Pryce "Stretch" Quintina—Boston Faction -Vincent "Dee Dee" Gioacchini—Boston Faction -Carmen Tortora—Boston Faction -Dennis LePore—Boston Faction -Cono Rizzi—Boston Faction -Anthony "The Little Cheese" DiNunzio—Boston Faction -William "Billy The Angel" Angelesco—Boston Faction -Robert Carozza—Boston Faction -Mike "Mikey English" Bashaw—Boston Faction -Keith Orlandella—Boston Faction -Vincent Federico—Boston Faction -Salvatore "Tea Party Tore" Marino—Boston Faction -Louis DiNunzio—Boston Faction -Johnny Scarpelli—Boston Faction -Pasquale "Patsy" Barone—Boston Faction -Vincent Capone—Boston Faction -Anthony "Chucky" Carlo—Boston Faction -Darin Bufalino—Boston Faction -John Aparicio Jr- Providence Faction -G.Pettinato- Providence Faction -Kristofer "Scars" Salvi—Boston Faction -Anthony "Wackado" Leono—Boston Faction -Michael "Mikey Cigars" Bernard-Hartford, CT Faction -James "Jimmy G" Gandolfo—Boston Faction -Richard “Munsta” DeLauro- Providence Faction Inactive members: -Luigi "Baby Shacks" Manocchio: Former boss from 1996 to 2009. Arrested in 2011 for his involvement in "shaking down" Rhode Island strip clubs. In 2015 was released from prison. -Raymond "Junior" Patriarca: Former boss and son of legendary boss Raymond L. S. Patriarca. Retired from mob life and now sells real estate in Rhode Island. -Vincent "The Animal" Ferrara: Former capo in the North End section of Boston. Now owns a series of legitimate businesses in and around Boston's North End. Past members: Peter J. "Chief Crazy Horse" Limone a former boss of the family. In 2001, Limone was released from prison after serving 33 years for a murder that he didn't commit. Limone later won a $26 million judgment for his wrongful conviction. Limone operated from Boston and served as the family's consigliere before 2009, after which he was promoted to boss. He was arrested on gambling charges in 2009; in 2010, he was given a suspended sentence. He died on June 19, 2017. Government informants and witnesses: -Vincent Teresa High Ranking Soldier (1971) -Angelo "Sonny" Mercurio Soldier (1987/1988) -John "Sonny" Castagna Soldier (1991) -Gaetano Milano Soldier (1991) -Antonino "Nino" Cucinotta Soldier (1995) -Frank "Cadillac Frank" Salemme Boss (1999) -Mark Rossetti Capo (2010) -Robert "Bobby" DeLuca Capo (2011)
Monday, July 12, 2021
Two consecutive mass shootings occurred at mosques in a terrorist attack in Christchurch, New Zealand, during Friday Prayer on 15 March 2019. The attack, carried out by a single gunman who entered both mosques, began at the Al Noor Mosque in the suburb of Riccarton at 1:40 pm and continued at the Linwood Islamic Centre at 1:52 pm. He killed 51 people and injured 40. Brenton Harrison Tarrant, a 28-year-old man from Grafton, New South Wales, Australia, was arrested shortly afterward. He was described in media reports as a white supremacist and part of the alt-right. He had live-streamed the first shooting on Facebook, and prior to the attack, had published an online manifesto; both the video and manifesto were subsequently banned in New Zealand and Australia. After police investigation, he was charged with 51 murders, 40 attempted murders, and engaging in a terrorist act. He initially pleaded not guilty to all charges, with the trial expected to start on 2 June 2020. On 26 March 2020, he changed his plea to guilty on all charges. He was sentenced to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole on 27 August 2020. It was the first time a sentence of life without parole was handed down in New Zealand. The attack was linked to an increase in white supremacy and alt-right extremism globally observed since about 2015. Politicians and world leaders condemned it, and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern described it as "one of New Zealand's darkest days". The government established a royal commission of inquiry into its security agencies in the wake of the shootings, which were the deadliest in modern New Zealand history and the worst ever committed by an Australian national. The commission submitted its report to the government on 26 November 2020, the details of which were made public on 7 December. Background: New Zealand has been considered a safe and tolerant place with low levels of gun violence and was named the second most peaceful country in the world by Global Peace Index in 2019, the year of the attacks. This attack was the first mass shooting in the country since the Raurimu massacre in 1997. Prior to that, the deadliest public mass shooting was the 1990 Aramoana massacre, in which 13 people died. While the country has rarely been associated with the extreme right, experts have suggested that far-right extremism has been growing in New Zealand. The sociologist Paul Spoonley has called Christchurch a hotbed for white supremacists and the extreme nationalist movement, a suggestion rejected by Christchurch MP Gerry Brownlee. Australia, where the gunman, Brenton Tarrant, was from, has also seen an increase in xenophobia, racism, and Islamophobia. In the 2018 census, over 57,000 New Zealand residents reported their religion as Islam, around 1.2% of the total population. The Al Noor Mosque opened in 1985; it was the first mosque in the South Island. The Linwood Islamic Centre opened in early 2018. Shootings- Al Noor Mosque: Tarrant arrived at the Al Noor Mosque in Riccarton and began shooting worshippers at around 1:40 pm. Police received the first emergency call at 1:41 pm. Approximately 190 people, mostly men, were inside the mosque attending Friday prayer at the time of the shooting. Tarrant live-streamed for 17 minutes (before and during the first attack and between the two attacks) on Facebook Live, starting with the drive to the Al Noor mosque and ending as he drove away from the mosque. Moments before the shooting, he played several songs, including "The British Grenadiers", a traditional British military marching song; and "Remove Kebab", a Serb nationalist and anti-Muslim propaganda music video cheering Radovan Karadžić, who was found guilty in 2016 of genocide against Bosnian Muslims by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. He also continued to play "military music" inside the mosque from a portable audio speaker attached to the front of a tactical vest he was wearing. As he approached the front entrance to the mosque, Tarrant appeared to be greeted by one of the worshippers, who said "Hello, brother" and was the first victim to be killed in the attack. Tarrant spent several minutes inside the mosque, shooting attendees indiscriminately. He first fired nine shots from a semiautomatic shotgun towards the front entrance before dropping it. He then began using an AR-15 style rifle and opened fire on people inside. He killed four men near the entrance and dozens more inside a prayer hall. A strobe light attached to one of his weapons was used to disorient victims. During the attack, a worshipper, Naeem Rashid, charged at him and was shot; Rashid later died from his injuries. Tarrant fired at worshippers in the prayer hall from close range, shooting many of his victims multiple times. He then left the mosque and fired on more people outside, killing a man. Returning to his vehicle, he retrieved another weapon before heading to the mosque's car park and shooting several people fleeing or hiding there. He then reentered the mosque and opened fire again on people who were already wounded in the prayer hall and unable to escape. Afterwards, Tarrant exited the mosque once more and killed a woman lying wounded on the footpath as she pleaded for help. He then returned to his car, which had been parked in a neighbouring driveway, and fled the scene to the music of "Fire" by The Crazy World of Arthur Brown, in which the singer proclaims, "I am the god of hellfire!" He fired at people from the driver's seat who were in cars and on foot as he fled, which left bullet holes in his windscreen and the passenger window of his car smashed. Tarrant had been planning to set fire to the mosque, as stated when he drove away to the Linwood Islamic Centre: "It was too quick. I should've stayed longer. There was more time for the fuel." He had four modified petrol containers in his car, which were intended as incendiary devices. A neighbour of the mosque told reporters he saw Tarrant flee and drop what appeared to be a firearm in the driveway. Tarrant had spent a total of about five minutes at the Al Noor Mosque. At 1:46 pm, as he drove away from the mosque, the Armed Offenders Squad (AOS) arrived near the scene. Police Commissioner Mike Bush said at this point he was already leaving the area, his car hidden by a bus. At this time, AOS members did not know how many shooters there were and were not informed that the offender had left the mosque. At 1:51 pm, first responders arrived at the Al Noor Mosque. About three minutes after Tarrant left the mosque, his vehicle passed by one or more police vehicles responding to the shooting. However, he remained undetected by police as he continued on his way eastwards on Bealey Ave to the Linwood Islamic Centre, driving at speeds up to 150 kilometres per hour (93 mph) in a 50-kilometre-per-hour (31 mph) zone, weaving in and out traffic, driving on the wrong side of the road and up onto the grass median strip. As Tarrant drove to the Linwood Islamic Centre, reports came in from the public of a vehicle driving "erratically" along Bealey Ave. Tarrant, on two occasions, also unsuccessfully tried to shoot the driver of a car next to him. At 1:51 pm, one minute before he reached the Linwood Islamic Centre, the livestream abruptly ended. However, the GoPro device attached to his helmet that was recording footage was still active and continued to record until Tarrant was apprehended by police eight minutes later. Linwood Islamic Centre: A second attack began at 1:52 pm at the Linwood Islamic Centre, a mosque 5 kilometres (3 mi) east of the Al Noor Mosque in Linwood. Tarrant parked his vehicle on the mosque's driveway, preventing other cars from entering or leaving. According to a witness, Tarrant was initially unable to find the mosque's main door, instead shooting people outside and through a window, killing four and alerting those inside. About 100 people were inside the mosque at the time, and had not been alerted to the attack at Al Noor. The mosque's acting imam credited a worshipper named Abdul Aziz Wahabzada with stopping the attack. Wahabzada told reporters he had taken a credit card reader and ran out of the mosque, by which time Tarrant outside had already shot several people. Tarrant was about to retrieve another gun from his car, so Wahabzada threw the reader at him. Tarrant took a rifle from his car and fired at Wahabzada, who took cover among nearby cars and retrieved an empty shotgun Tarrant had dropped. Despite Wahabzada's attempt to draw Tarrant's attention away from the mosque by shouting "I'm here!", he entered the mosque and continued firing in a prayer hall, killing an additional three people. When Tarrant returned to his car again, Wahabzada threw the shotgun at the car, shattering the left rear window. Tarrant then drove away from the mosque at 1:55 pm, and a minute later, a member of the public waved down a police car to report shots had been fired in Linwood. At 1:59 pm, police arrived at the Linwood Islamic Centre, the same minute Tarrant was arrested on Brougham Street. Arrest: Early reports indicated "multiple, simultaneous attacks", but later, only a single suspect, Tarrant, was implicated. A silver Subaru Outback matching the description of Tarrant's vehicle was seen by a police unit and a pursuit was initiated at 1:57 pm. Tarrant was arrested on Brougham Street in Sydenham at 1:59 pm, 18 minutes after the first emergency call. Video footage taken by an onlooker showed his car had been rammed against the kerb by a police car before his arrest at gunpoint. The Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, said Tarrant had been planning to continue the attacks at a third location, later identified as the mosque in Ashburton, 90 km (56 mi) southwest of Christchurch. According to Ardern, "There were two other firearms in the vehicle that the offender was in and it absolutely was his intention to continue with his attack". Police Commissioner Mike Bush corroborated this, saying police had stopped Tarrant on his way to a third location. The arresting officers were rural-based police who were coincidentally in Christchurch to attend a training session on dealing with armed offenders. Victims: Fifty-one people, 47 male and 4 female, were killed in the attacks: 44 at the Al Noor Mosque and 7 at the Linwood Islamic Centre. One of the victims died shortly after in Christchurch Hospital, while another died in hospital on 2 May, seven weeks after the attack. Those killed were between 3 and 77 years old. The hospital's Chief of Surgery said on 16 March that four had died in ambulances en route to the hospital. Forty others were injured: 35 at the Al Noor Mosque and 5 at the Linwood Islamic Centre. On 17 March, Commissioner Bush said 36 were being treated for gunshot wounds in hospital. Two were in a serious condition, and a 4-year-old girl was transferred to Starship Hospital in Auckland in a critical condition. In the days following the attacks, dozens of people remained missing and several diplomatic offices and foreign ministries released statements regarding the number of victims from their nations. Police requested that people listed as missing, though actually safe, register themselves on the Restoring Family Links website. The New Zealand Red Cross published a list of missing people which included nationals of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Jordan, Malaysia, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia. Among the dead listed in New Zealand Police media releases were citizens of Bangladesh, Egypt, Fiji, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Jordan, Malaysia, Mauritius, New Zealand, Pakistan and Palestine. A citizen from Turkey died in the hospital in early May. Atta Elayyan, an IT entrepreneur and goalkeeper for the New Zealand national futsal team, was among those killed. The known birthplaces of the deceased are as follows: Pakistan 9 India 7 Bangladesh 5 Egypt 4 United Arab Emirates 3 Fiji 3 Somalia 2 Syria 2 Indonesia 1 Jordan 1 Kuwait 1 New Zealand 1 Unknown/not stated 12 Perpetrator: Police charged Brenton Harrison Tarrant, a 28-year-old Australian man. He grew up in Grafton, New South Wales and attended Grafton High School. After Tarrant's parents separated when he was young, his mother's subsequent boyfriend abused her and the children. He worked as a personal trainer in his hometown from 2009 to 2011, quitting after an injury, and after inheriting A$457,000 from his father, who committed suicide in 2010. At the time of his mass murder, Tarrant had been living in Andersons Bay in Dunedin since 2017, and was a member of a South Otago gun club where he practised shooting at its range. A neighbour, who shared an internal wall with Tarrant in his house in Andersons Bay, described him as a "bit of a recluse" and a "loner, but a friendly loner." The neighbour also said Tarrant would offer to mow the lawns for his and his neighbour's landlord and help out around the property. In 2018, Tarrant was treated for eye and thigh injuries at Dunedin Public Hospital; he told doctors he had sustained the injuries while trying to dislodge a bullet that had been improperly chambered in a gun. The doctors also treated him for issues arising from steroid abuse, but they never reported Tarrant's visit to the authorities, which would have resulted in them visiting his home and reviewing his gun licence. Shortly before the attacks, he sent his mother a message that she was "about to see and read 'the most terrible things' about him". In a report published by Newshub in April 2020, survivors of the attack claimed that a man that they believe to be Tarrant had visited the Al Noor Mosque three times consecutively during Friday Prayer and pretended to pray with worshippers before the attack. Gamal Fouda, the Imam of the Al Noor Mosque, told Newshub that Tarrant dressed up in traditional Pakistani clothing while inside the mosque, and that he had questioned a person about the scheduling of the Friday Prayer times. Fouda also added that Tarrant "...knew the place like his house." Canterbury Police District Commander Superintendent John Price told Newshub that police have found evidence from CCTV footage that Tarrant's vehicle had been parked across the street from the mosque before 15 March. However, Price also said police found no evidence to support the claim that Tarrant had entered the mosque grounds before the attack. Instead, Price said that police believe Tarrant had viewed an online tour of Al-Noor as part of his planning. An Official Information Act request by Newshub also revealed Tarrant flew a drone over the mosque on 8 January, weeks before he would open fire. Additionally, he used the Internet to find detailed mosque plans, interior pictures, and prayer schedules to figure out when mosques would be at their busiest levels. Travels and racist views: Tarrant began expressing racist ideas from a young age and reportedly started using the controversial 4chan internet forum at the age of 14. From 2012 onward, he visited a number of countries in Asia and Europe, using the money he inherited from his father. He always travelled alone, with the exception of a trip to North Korea. Police in Bulgaria and Turkey investigated Tarrant's visits to their countries. Security officials suspected he had come into contact with far-right organisations about two years before the shooting, while visiting European nations. He donated €1,500 to Identitäre Bewegung Österreich (IBÖ), the Austrian branch of Generation Identity (part of the Identitarian movement) in Europe, as well as €2,200 to Génération Identitaire, the French branch of the group, and interacted with IBÖ leader Martin Sellner via email between January 2018 and July 2018, offering to meet in Vienna and a linking to his YouTube channel. Captivated with sites of battles between Christian European nations and the Ottoman Empire, Tarrant went on another series of visits to the Balkans from 2016 to 2018, with Croatia, Bulgaria, Hungary, Turkey and Bosnia-Herzegovina confirming his presence there in these years. He posted Balkan nationalist material on social media platforms, and called for the United States to be weakened in order to prevent events such as the NATO intervention in Kosovo in support of Muslim Albanians against Christian Serbs. He said he was against intervention by NATO because he saw the Serbian military as "Christian Europeans attempting to remove these Islamic occupiers from Europe". By June 2016, relatives noted a change in Tarrant's personality, which he claimed was the result of a mugging incident in Ethiopia, and his mother had expressed concern for his mental health. In 2016, three years prior to the attacks, Tarrant praised Blair Cottrell as a leader of the far-right movements in Australia and made more than 30 comments on the now-deleted "United Patriots Front" and "True Blue Crew" web pages. An Australian Broadcasting Corporation team who studied the comments called them "fragments and digital impressions of a well-travelled young man who frequented hate-filled anonymous messaging boards and was deeply engaged in a global alt-right culture." A Melbourne man said that in 2016, he filed a police complaint after Tarrant allegedly told him in an online conversation, "I hope one day you meet the rope". He said that the police told him to block Tarrant and did not take a statement from him. The police said that they were unable to locate a complaint. Tarrant claimed that he is racist but not xenophobic. He is thought to have become obsessed with terrorist attacks committed by Islamic extremists in 2016 and 2017, started planning an attack about two years prior to the shootings, and chosen his targets three months in advance. He admitted that he is a fascist. Tarrant expressed his hopes to create a "gun conflict" in the United States over gun ownership, and wrote that mass shootings could cause a civil war in the U.S. over the Second Amendment. After his arrest, he told investigators that he frequented right-wing discussion boards on 4chan and 8chan, and also found YouTube to be "a significant source of information and inspiration." Weapons: Police recovered six guns: two AR-15 style rifles (one manufactured by Windham Weaponry and the other by Ruger), two 12-gauge shotguns (a semiautomatic Mossberg 930 and a pump-action Ranger 870), and two other rifles (a .357 Magnum Uberti lever-action rifle, and a .223-caliber Mossberg Predator bolt-action rifle). They were all purchased between December 2017 and March 2019, along with more than 7,000 rounds of ammunition. Police Commissioner Mike Bush said Tarrant held a firearms licence with an "A" endorsement, and he started buying his arsenal a month after acquiring his licence. According to a city gun store, Tarrant bought four firearms and ammunition online. The shop said none of the four were military-style weapons, and it is not known if these guns were the ones used in the attacks. The shop did not detect anything unusual or extraordinary about the customer. Additionally, he illegally replaced the semi-automatic rifles' small, legal magazines with 30-round magazines purchased online, and the triggers of some of the firearms were modified so he could fire them more quickly. According to Stuff, Tarrant was wrongly granted a firearms licence due to police failures. Sources said that police failed to interview a family member as required for obtaining a firearms licence, instead interviewing two men that Tarrant had met through an online chatroom. In the days after the attacks, the police had quashed concerns that Tarrant had obtained the weapons inappropriately. Police have not given comment to this allegation, saying they do not wish to interfere with the ongoing inquiry into the event. The guns and magazines used were covered in white writing naming historical events, people, and motifs related to historical conflicts, wars, and battles between Muslims and European Christians, as well as the names of recent Islamic terrorist attack victims and the names of far-right attackers. The markings also included references to "Turkofagos" (Turk eater), a term used by Greeks during the Greek War of Independence and white supremacist slogans such as the anti-Muslim phrase "Remove Kebab" that originated from Serbia and the Fourteen Words. Apart from the Latin alphabet, writings on the weaponry were in the Cyrillic, Armenian and Georgian alphabets. The writings were names dedicated to historic individuals that fought against Muslim forces. On his pack was a Black Sun patch, and two dog tags: one with a Celtic cross, and one with a Slavic swastika design. Police also found two improvised explosive devices attached to a car; these were defused by the New Zealand Defence Force. No explosives were found on the gunman. Manifesto: Tarrant claims to be the author of a 74-page manifesto titled "The Great Replacement", a reference to the "Great Replacement" and "white genocide" conspiracy theories. It said that the attacks were planned two years prior, and the location was selected three months prior. Minutes before the attacks began, the manifesto was emailed to more than 30 recipients, including the prime minister's office and several media outlets, and links were shared on Twitter and 8chan. In the manifesto several anti-immigrant sentiments are expressed, including hate speech against migrants, white supremacist rhetoric, and calls for all non-European immigrants in Europe who are claimed to be "invading his land" to be removed. The manifesto displays neo-Nazi symbols such as the Black Sun and the Odin's cross. However, the author denies being a Nazi, describing himself instead as an "ethno-nationalist", an "eco-fascist", and a "kebab removalist", in reference to a meme exalting the genocide of Bosnian Muslims that occurred during the Bosnian War. The author cites Norwegian terrorist Anders Behring Breivik and others as an inspiration. The author says he originally targeted the Al Huda Mosque in Dunedin, but changed his mind after visiting Christchurch, because the Christchurch mosques contained "more adults and a prior history of extremism". In 2014 and 2015, local press reported an allegation that a congregation member had been radicalised at the mosque. The manifesto was described by some media outlets as "shitposting"—trolling designed to engender conflict between certain groups and people. Readers of the manifesto described it as containing deliberately provocative and absurd statements, such as sarcastically claiming to have been turned into a killer by playing violent video games. On 23 March 2019, the manifesto was deemed "objectionable" by the Chief Censor of New Zealand, making it unlawful to possess or distribute it in New Zealand. Exemptions to the ban were available for journalists, researchers and academics. In August 2019, The New Zealand Herald reported that printed copies of the manifesto were being sold online outside New Zealand, something New Zealand law could not prevent. Genocide scholar A. Dirk Moses analysed the manifesto, concluding that "Tarrant's words yield insights into the subjectivity of genocidaires more generally, namely that they commit terrorist acts with genocidal intent as – in their own mind – preventative self-defence; not as acts of aggression but, as he writes, 'a partisan action against an occupying force'". According to Moses, it is hypocritical for Tarrant to complain about supposed "white genocide" from immigration without recognising that he himself comes from a settler colony that resulted from what Moses characterises as genocide against the Indigenous Australians. Legal proceedings- Arraignment: Tarrant appeared in the Christchurch District Court on 16 March, where he was charged with one count of murder. The judge ordered the courtroom closed to the public except for accredited media, and allowed the accused to be filmed and photographed on the condition that his face be pixellated. In court, Tarrant smiled at reporters and made an inverted OK gesture below his waist, said to be a "white power" sign. The case was transferred to the High Court and he was remanded in custody, as his lawyer did not seek bail. He was subsequently transferred to the country's only maximum-security unit at Auckland Prison. He has lodged a formal complaint regarding his prison conditions, on the grounds that he has no access to newspapers, television, Internet, visitors or phone calls. On 4 April, police announced they had increased the total number of charges to 89, 50 for murder and 39 for attempted murder, with other charges still under consideration. At the next hearing on 5 April, he was ordered by the judge to undergo a psychiatric assessment of his mental fitness to stand trial. On 21 May 2019, Commissioner Bush announced that a new charge of engaging in a terrorist act had been laid against Tarrant under section 6A of the Terrorism Suppression Act 2002. One murder charge and one attempted murder charge were also added, bringing the total to 51 and 40 respectively. Initial plea and pre-trial detention: On 14 June 2019, Tarrant appeared at the Christchurch High Court via audio-visual link from Auckland Prison. Through his lawyer, he pleaded not guilty to engaging in a terrorist act, 51 counts of murder, and 40 counts of attempted murder. Mental health assessments had indicated no issues regarding his fitness to plead or stand trial. The trial start date was set for 4 May 2020; the Crown prosecutor estimated the trial would last around six weeks. On 12 September 2019, the trial date was pushed back to 2 June 2020, to avoid coinciding with the Islamic holy month of Ramadan. On 14 August 2019, it was reported that Tarrant had been able to send seven letters from prison, two to his mother and five to unnamed recipients. One of these letters was subsequently posted on the Internet message boards 4chan and 8chan by a recipient. Minister of Corrections Kelvin Davis and the Department of Corrections were criticised for allowing the distribution of these letters. On 19 August, Prime Minister Ardern announced that the Government would explore amending the Corrections Act 2004 to further restrict what mail can be received and sent by prisoners. Guilty plea and sentencing arrangements: On 26 March 2020, Tarrant appeared at the Christchurch High Court via audio-visual link from Auckland Prison. During the appearance, he pleaded guilty to all 92 charges: one of engaging in a terrorist act, 51 of murder, and 40 of attempted murder. Due to the nationwide COVID-19 pandemic lockdown, the general public was barred from the hearing; however, media representatives and representatives for the Al-Noor and Linwood mosques were present in the courtroom. According to media reports, Tarrant's lawyers Shane Tait and Jonathan Hudson had informed the courts that Tarrant was considering changing his plea. On 25 March, Tarrant issued his lawyers with formal written instructions confirming that he wanted to change his pleas to guilty. In response, court authorities began making arrangements for the case to be called as soon as possible in the midst of the COVID-19 lockdown. The judge convicted Tarrant on all charges and remanded him in custody to await sentencing. On 10 July, the government announced that overseas-based victims of the Christchurch mosque shootings would receive border exemptions and financial help in order to fly to New Zealand for the duration of Tarrant's sentencing. On 13 July, it was reported that Tarrant had dismissed his lawyers and would be representing himself during sentencing proceedings. Sentencing: Sentencing began on 24 August 2020 before Justice Cameron Mander at the Christchurch High Court. Capacity in the main courtroom was limited to comply with social distancing requirements of COVID-19 alert level 2, with the proceedings livestreamed to seven other courtrooms to accommodate victims and media. In addition, the sentencing proceedings were livestreamed to people at home who were unable to attend the proceedings in person. Extra security was implemented at the Christchurch courthouse; roads around the precinct were closed, armed police including police dogs and snipers were deployed, and non-urgent court business was suspended. Tarrant was flown from Auckland to Christchurch aboard an RNZAF C-130 Hercules, and held in the court cells to mitigate the risk of him being attacked on the 19 km (12 mi) journey between the courthouse and Christchurch Men's Prison. During the sentencing phase, the Crown prosecutors read the statement of facts to the court, showing how Tarrant had meticulously planned the two mosque shootings as well as more attacks. Numerous survivors of the mosque shooting and their relatives gave victim impact statements, which were covered by national and international media. Tarrant remained mostly unemotional and expressionless during these victim impact statements, except for certain moments such as when he smiled when Abreem Naeem, a widow of a victim, called Tarrant a loser. On 27 August 2020, the day of sentencing, Philip Hall QC, who had been appointed as Tarrant's standby counsel, said that his only instruction from Tarrant was that he did "not oppose the application that he should be sentenced to the term of life without parole". Justice Mander gave Tarrant the opportunity to address the court, however Tarrant replied, "No, thank you". Justice Mander sentenced Tarrant to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole for each of the 51 murders. He was also sentenced to life imprisonment on the charge of engaging in a terrorist act and 40 attempted murder charges. It was the first time that life imprisonment without parole, the maximum sentence available in New Zealand, had been imposed. In his sentencing remarks, Justice Mander said Tarrant's crimes "are so wicked that even if you are detained until you die, it will not exhaust the requirements of punishment and denunciation." Following the sentencing, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters called for Tarrant to serve his sentence in Australia in order to avoid New Zealand having to pay the costs for his life imprisonment. The cost of housing Tarrant in prison was estimated at NZ$4,930 per day, compared to an average cost of $338 per sentenced prisoner per day. Peters's remarks were also motivated by Australia's policy of deporting New Zealand citizens who had committed crimes or breached character requirements. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has said there is currently no legal basis for extradition and that respecting the wishes of his victims and their relatives would be paramount. Justice Minister Andrew Little said Parliament would need to pass a law to deport Tarrant to Australia. University of Otago law professor Dr Andrew Geddis said it was "legally impossible" under New Zealand law to deport Tarrant to Australia to serve his sentence. Other New Zealand politicians including Leader of the Opposition and National Party leader Judith Collins, fellow National MP Simon Bridges, Greens co-leader James Shaw, and ACT Party leader David Seymour welcomed Tarrant's life sentence. Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison also welcomed Tarrant's life sentence, saying Australians were horrified by Tarrant's "despicable act" and regarded New Zealand as "family". On 28 August, Morrison and the Australian Minister for Home Affairs Peter Dutton advised that while no formal request had been made by the New Zealand Government to repatriate Tarrant to Australia and for him to serve his life sentence in an Australian correctional facility, the Australian Government was open to considering a request. Imprisonment: On 14 April 2021, Tarrant appealed against his prison conditions and his designation as a "terrorist entity" at the Auckland High Court. According to media reports, Tarrant is being imprisoned at a special "prison within a prison" known as a "Prisoners of Extreme Risk Unit" with two other inmates. 18 guards have been rostered to guard the convicted gunman, who is being housed in his own wing. On 24 April, Tarrant abandoned his appeal against his prison conditions and designation as a "terrorist entity". Aftermath- Emergency services response: In April 2019, police released a final timeline of the event. It said police were at the first scene within minutes of the incident being reported at 1:41 pm. It was initially understood that the arrest had taken 36 minutes, but it was later clarified that it had taken 18 minutes. In response to criticism that police were too slow to react, District Commander John Price said: "That is an incredibly fast response time. You had a mobile offender across a large metropolitan city." St. John Ambulance sent 20 ambulances and other vehicles to the mosques. Most of the wounded were taken to Christchurch Hospital. Forty-eight people with gunshot wounds, including young children, were treated at the hospital, with some taken to other hospitals within Christchurch and nationally. Canterbury District Health Board activated its mass-casualty plan. Paramedics describe a 'river of blood' coming out of the mosque and having to step over bodies to collect the wounded. Police advised all mosques in the country to close until further notice, and sent officers to secure various sites in Christchurch. All Air New Zealand Link services departing from Christchurch Airport were cancelled as a precaution, due to the absence of security screening at the regional terminal. Security was increased at Parliament, and public tours of the buildings were cancelled. In Dunedin, the Armed Offenders Squad searched a house, later reported to have been rented by the gunman, and cordoned off part of the surrounding street in Andersons Bay because Tarrant had indicated on social media that he had originally planned to target the Al Huda Mosque in that city. Governmental response: For the first time in New Zealand history, the terrorism threat level was raised to high. Prime Minister Ardern called the incident an "act of extreme and unprecedented violence" on "one of New Zealand's darkest days". She described it as a "well-planned" terrorist attack. She said she would render the person accused of the attacks "nameless" and urged the public to speak the victims' names instead. A meeting of the Officials Committee for Domestic and External Security Co-ordination was convened to coordinate the government's response. Ardern, who had just left a school climate-strike rally in New Plymouth, returned to her hotel along with the Minister for Security and Intelligence, Andrew Little, to give a press statement. Ardern cancelled her remaining public engagements scheduled for that day, including opening the WOMAD international arts festival. She then boarded an RNZAF plane to fly to Wellington to join official meetings taking place at the Beehive. Ardern issued a directive that flags on "all Government and public buildings" should be flown at half-mast until further notice. In May 2019, the NZ Transport Authority offered to replace any vehicle number plates with the prefix "GUN" (issued in 2013) on request, although they were not withdrawn. In mid-October 2019, Prime Minister Ardern awarded bravery awards to the two police officers who had apprehended the shooter Tarrant at the annual Police Association Conference in Wellington. Due to the legal proceedings against Tarrant, the two officers had interim name suppression, but in December 2019 this was lifted. On 1 September 2020, Prime Minister Ardern designated Tarrant as a terrorist entity, explaining, "This entity freezes all his assets and also makes it a criminal offence for anyone to support the shooter financially, and ensures the offender cannot be involved in the financing of terrorism in the future". Other responses in New Zealand: Within an hour of the attack, all schools in the city were placed in "lockdown". A ministry report launched after the attacks said schools' handling of the events were varied: some schoolchildren in lockdown still had their mobile phones and some were able to view the footage of the first attack online, meanwhile some schools had children "commando crawl" to the bathroom under teacher supervision. Student climate strikers at the global School Strike for the Climate rally in Cathedral Square, near the sites of the attacks, were advised by police either to seek refuge in public buildings or go home. The citywide lockdown lasted nearly 3 hours. In response to security concerns, the University of Otago postponed its sesquicentennial street parade which had been scheduled for 16 March. The third Test cricket match between New Zealand and Bangladesh, scheduled to commence at Hagley Oval in Hagley Park on 16 March, was likewise cancelled due to security concerns. The Bangladesh team were planning to attend Friday prayer at the Al Noor Mosque, and were moments from entering the building when the incident began. The players then fled on foot to Hagley Oval. Two days later, Canterbury withdrew from their match against Wellington in the Plunket Shield cricket tournament. Likewise the Super Rugby match between the Crusaders, based in Christchurch, and Highlanders, based in Dunedin, due to be played the next day was cancelled as "a mark of respect for the events". After the attacks, there were renewed calls to rename the Crusaders team, since its name derives from the medieval Crusades against Muslims. Canadian rock singer-songwriter Bryan Adams and American thrash metal band Slayer both cancelled their concerts that were scheduled to be held in Christchurch on 17 March, two days after the shootings. The Polynesian cultural festival Polyfest was cancelled after the shootings, with security concerns cited as the reason. The music and cultural festival WOMAD went ahead in New Plymouth despite the attacks, with armed police stationed around the festival perimeter, inside the event, and outside artists' hotels. The mosques involved in the attacks, and others around the country and the world, became the focus of vigils, messages, and floral tributes. The mayor of Christchurch, Lianne Dalziel, encouraged people to lay flowers outside the city's Botanic Gardens. As a mark of sympathy and solidarity, school pupils and other groups performed haka and waiata to honour those killed in the attacks. Street gangs including the Mongrel Mob, Black Power, and the King Cobras sent members to mosques around the country to help protect them during prayer time. One week after the attacks, an open-air Friday prayer service was held in Hagley Park. Broadcast nationally on radio and television, it was attended by 20,000 people, including Ardern, who said "New Zealand mourns with you. We are one." The imam of the Al Noor Mosque thanked New Zealanders for their support and added, "We are broken-hearted but we are not broken." A national remembrance service was held on 29 March, a fortnight after the attacks. Operation Whakahaumanu: Shortly after the attack, New Zealand Police launched Operation Whakahaumanu. The operation was designed to reassure New Zealanders after the attack and to also investigate possible threats who shared a similar ideology to the gunman. Police increased visibility in streets and visited many schools, businesses, and religious places as part of the operation. In Canterbury alone, there were almost 600 people of interest to police, where hundreds of properties were searched. On 14 July 2020, the Independent Police Conduct Authority (IPCA) deemed three of these searches to be unlawful. Fundraisers and philanthropy: An online fundraiser on the fundraising website "Givealittle" started to support victims and their families had, as of August 2020, raised over NZ$10,903,966. Counting other fundraisers, a combined total of $8.4 million had been raised for the victims and their families (as of 20 March 2019). Prime Minister Ardern reiterated that those injured or killed in the shootings and their immediate families are covered by the country's accident-compensation scheme, ACC, which offers compensation for lost income and a $10,000 funeral grant, among other benefits. In late June, it was reported that the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh had raised more than NZ$967,500 (US$650,000) through its New Zealand Islamophobia Attack Fund for the victims of the Christchurch mosque shootings. This amount included $60,000 raised by Tree of Life – Or L'Simcha Congregation. These funds will be donated to the Christchurch Foundation, a registered charity which has been receiving money to support victims of the Christchurch shootings. This philanthropy was inspired by local Muslim support for the Pittsburgh Jewish community following the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting in late October 2018. Global response: On 15 May 2019, Ardern and French President Emmanuel Macron co-hosted the Christchurch Call summit in Paris, which called for major technology companies to step up their efforts to combat violent extremism. The accord's founding signatory nations were Australia, Canada, the European Commission, France, Germany, Indonesia, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Jordan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Senegal, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. In addition, the technology companies Amazon, DailyMotion, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Qwant, Twitter and YouTube also signed. Related arrests and incidents- New Zealand: Police arrested four people on 15 March in relation to the attacks, including a woman and a man, after finding a firearm in a vehicle in which they were travelling together. The woman was released uncharged, but the man was held in custody and was charged with a firearms offence. Additionally, a 30-year-old man said he was arrested when he arrived, unarmed, at Papanui High School to pick up his 13-year-old brother-in-law. He was in camouflage clothing, which he said he habitually wore. He said police gave him a verbal warning for disorderly behaviour. He is seeking compensation for a wrongful arrest. The actions were defended by police, who mentioned the threat level after the massacre and that they had to deal with reports possibly related to the attacks. On 4 March 2020, a 19-year-old Christchurch man was arrested for allegedly making a terror threat against the Al Noor mosque on an encrypted social media platform, Telegram. Media reports subsequently identified the man as Sam Brittenden, a member of the white supremacist group Action Zealandia. On 4 March 2021, a 27-year-old man was charged with "threatening to kill" after making an online threat against both the Linwood Islamic Centre and Al Noor mosque on the social media site 4chan. The suspect was granted name suppression and remanded into custody until 19 March. On 20 May 2021, a 68-year-old woman appeared in the Christchurch District Court for verbally abusing a survivor and her relatives at the Farmers branch in Rangiora in December 2020. The defendant was alleged to have asked the survivor whether she was born in New Zealand and then suggested that she leave the country. On 17 June 2021, national security advisor Cameron Bayly confirmed, during a conference about violent extremism and terrorism, that the New Zealand Police had foiled two mass shooting plots around the time of the 2019 attack. The first attack was uncovered a few weeks before the shootings, while the second was uncovered two weeks after. Outside New Zealand: On 19 March, an Australian man who had posted on social media praising the Christchurch shootings was indicted on one count of aggravated possession of a firearm without a licence and four counts of using or possessing a prohibited weapon. He was released on bail on the condition that he stay offline. On 18 March 2019, the Australian Federal Police's NSW Joint Counter Terrorism Team conducted raids on the homes of Tarrant's sister and mother near Coffs Harbour and Maclean in New South Wales. These raids were carried out by Australian Police to assist New Zealand Police with their investigation into the shootings. Tarrant's sister and mother reportedly cooperated with Australian police. A 24-year-old man from Oldham, Greater Manchester, United Kingdom was arrested on 16 March for sending Facebook posts in support of the shootings. On 20 March, an employee for Transguard, a company based in the United Arab Emirates, was fired by his company and deported for making comments supporting the shootings. In Canada, neo-Nazis Paul Fromm and Kevin Goudreau were put under investigation after the former shared the shooter's manifesto on the website of his organisation Canadian Association for Free Expression. Thomas Alan Bolin, a 22-year-old self-described "Folk Odinist" and founder of a Facebook group known as Odin's Warriors, and his cousin Austin Witkowski attempted to commit a copycat attack in Baltimore, Maryland. Under the aliases "Peter Vincent" and "Ragnar Odinson", the duo sent threatening messages on Facebook Messenger and planned to buy food, ammunition, and firearms in preparation for a similar attack. Bolin also praised the shooter's live-stream and manifesto, saying "Brugh dude killed 40 Muslims". Bolin was later convicted of lying to the FBI for claiming he did not possess any firearms. Inspired incidents: Nine days after the attack, a mosque in Escondido, California, was set on fire. Police found graffiti on the mosque's driveway that referenced the Christchurch shootings, leading them to investigate the fire as a terrorist attack. A mass shooting later took place at a synagogue in nearby Poway on 27 April 2019, killing one person and injuring three others. The suspect in the shooting, John T. Earnest, also claimed responsibility for the fire and praised the Christchurch shootings in a manifesto. He and Tarrant were said to have been radicalised on 8chan's /pol/ discussion board. On 3 August 2019, Patrick Crusius killed 23 people and injured 23 others in a mass shooting at a Walmart in El Paso, Texas. In a manifesto posted to 8chan's /pol/ board, he expressed support for and inspiration from the Christchurch shootings. On 10 August 2019, Philip Manshaus tried to attack a mosque in Bærum, Norway, and livestream it on Facebook. He referred to Tarrant as a saint online and posted an image depicting Tarrant, Crusius, and Earnest as "heroes". On 27 January 2021, the Singaporean Internal Security Department reported it had arrested a 16-year old Protestant Indian youth under the Internal Security Act for plotting to attack the Assyafaah and Yusof Ishak Mosques on the anniversary of the Christchurch mosque shootings. The youth had produced a manifesto which described Tarrant as a "saint" and praised the Christchurch mosque shootings as the "justifiable killing of Muslims." Unable to obtain firearms and explosives due to Singapore's strict gun control laws, the youth had instead purchased a machete and vest. Reactions- World leaders: Queen Elizabeth II, New Zealand's head of state, said she was "deeply saddened" by the attacks. Other politicians and world leaders also condemned the attacks, with some attributing them to rising Islamophobia. The prime minister of Pakistan, Imran Khan, announced that Pakistani emigrant Naeem Rashid, who charged at the gunman and died as a result of the attack on the Al Noor Mosque, would be posthumously honoured with a national award for his courage. The prime minister of Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina, announced that "In the future, whenever we send our cricket team abroad, we will do that after examining and reviewing the security matters of the host countries" and added that Bangladesh had always provided highest security to visiting foreign teams. Serbia's Foreign Minister Ivica Dačić condemned the Christchurch attack and said that the shooter "has nothing to do with Serbia." Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić criticised media for implying that Serbs should be blamed for the shootings. The president of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, showed footage taken by Tarrant to his supporters at campaign rallies for upcoming local elections. The New Zealand and Australian governments, as well as Turkey's main opposition party, criticised his actions. U.S. President Donald Trump condemned the "horrible massacre". When asked after the attacks if he thought white nationalists were a growing threat around the world, Trump replied, "I don't really. I think it's a small group of people that have very, very serious problems. It's certainly a terrible thing." Far-right: Two New Zealand-based anti-immigration groups, the Dominion Movement and the New Zealand National Front, quickly condemned the attacks, distanced themselves from the perpetrator, and shut their websites down. However, the broader far-right culture celebrated the attacks and "sanctified" Tarrant as a central figure. Tarrant's manifesto was translated and distributed in more than a dozen different languages, and a number of supporters on 8chan made photo and video edits of the shooting. Some extremists were inspired by Tarrant, committing violent incidents and deadly attacks of their own, such as those in Poway, El Paso, and Bærum. The United Kingdom's domestic intelligence service, MI5, launched an inquiry into Tarrant's possible links to the British far-right. Islamic groups: Ahmed Bhamji, chair of the largest mosque in New Zealand, spoke at a rally on 23 March in front of one thousand people. He claimed that Mossad, the Israeli foreign intelligence agency, was behind the attack. The claim has been widely described as an unfounded, antisemitic conspiracy theory. The chairman of the Federation of Islamic Associations of New Zealand said that Bhamji's statement did not represent other New Zealand Muslims, but Bhamji defended his statements. Sri Lankan Defence Ministry: According to Sri Lankan State Defence Minister Ruwan Wijewardene, an early inquiry indicated that the 2019 Sri Lanka Easter bombings on 21 April were retaliation for the Christchurch attack. However, some analysts believe the attacks to have been planned before the Christchurch attack, and any linkage was questioned by New Zealand's government—with Prime Minister Ardern saying she was not aware of any intelligence linking the two. Video distribution: Copies of the live-streamed video were reposted on many platforms and file-sharing websites, including Facebook, LiveLeak, and YouTube. Police, Muslim-advocacy groups, and government agencies urged anyone who found the footage to take it down or report it. The New Zealand Office of Film and Literature Classification quickly classified the video as "objectionable", making it a criminal offence in the country to distribute, copy, or exhibit the video, with potential penalties of up to 14 years' imprisonment for an individual, or up to $100,000 in fines for a corporation. Arrests and prosecutions: At least eight people have been arrested for possessing or sharing the video or manifesto; most of their names have been suppressed either to prevent threats against them or in support of freedom of expression online. On 5 March 2019, an 18-year-old man was arrested and charged with inciting racial disharmony under the Human Rights Act. Although authorities said he was not involved in the shootings, he was denied bail, and faces up to 14 years in prison if convicted on all charges. He appeared in Christchurch District Court on 18 March faced with a charge of distributing the video, and a second charge of making an objectionable publication by posting, between 8 and 15 March, a photo of the Al Noor Mosque bearing the message "target acquired", as well as other chat messages "inciting extreme violence". On 20 March 2019, Christchurch man Philip Arps was indicted on two charges of sharing a live-stream of the mosque shootings under the Films, Videos, and Publications Classification Act 1993. He was denied bail and remanded into police custody until his next court appearance, which is scheduled for 15 April. His company also attracted criticism for its use of Nazi symbols. Arps subsequently pleaded guilty to two charges of distributing video footage of the Al Noor attack, one count of sharing the accused live-stream footage to approximately 30 people on Facebook, and requesting that another person add a cross-hair and kill count to the footage. In June 2019, he was sentenced to 21 months' imprisonment. On 27 August, Arps' appeal of his sentence was dismissed. Arps had also expressed neo-Nazi views and sent letters advocating violence against New Zealand politicians. In late January 2020, Arps was released from prison under strict conditions including wearing a GPS electronic monitor, avoiding Muslims and Muslim buildings and prayer rooms, and not owning or touching firearms. On 2 July 2019, a 16-year-old boy pleaded guilty to possessing footage of the Christchurch shootings. Though he was released on bail and ordered to appear at a Family Group Conference on 30 July, he was subsequently returned to prison on 9 July for breaching his bail conditions. On 12 July 2019, a Dunedin man appeared in the Dunedin District Court on the charge of possessing footage of the Christchurch mosque shootings among other charges. He was remanded into police custody. On 12 February 2020, a Palmerston North man was sentenced to 12 months' imprisonment for posting footage of the Christchurch shooting on his Facebook page. On 26 February 2020, a Christchurch man was jailed for nearly two years for doctoring footage of the mosque shootings with a Call of Duty tagline for white supremacist Philip Arps two days after the attacks. On 15 June 2021, an Adelaide man appeared in the Adelaide Magistrates Court for possessing extremist material after being allegedly caught downloading a video of the shootings. The defendant claimed that he downloaded the video by mistake and denied being an extremist. He also claimed to have converted to Islam in October 2020. Media outlets: Several media organisations in Australia and tabloid-news websites in the UK broadcast parts of the video, up to the point the gunman entered the building, despite pleas from the New Zealand Police not to show it. Sky Television New Zealand temporarily stopped its syndication of Sky News Australia after that network showed the footage, and said it was working with Sky News Australia to prevent further displays of the video. At least three Internet service providers in New Zealand blocked access to 8chan and other sites related to the attacks, and temporarily blocked other sites hosting the video such as 4chan, LiveLeak, and Mega until they comply with requests to take down copies of the video. The administrator of the online message board Kiwi Farms refused a New Zealand Police request for the data of users who made posts related to Tarrant and the attack. Social media: Social media sites including Facebook, YouTube, Reddit, and Twitter said they were working diligently to remove the video from their platforms and would also remove anything posted in support of the attacks. According to Facebook, no complaints were made about the video until 12 minutes after the live-stream ended; the original video from Tarrant himself had been viewed fewer than 200 times before Facebook was notified of its content, and it had been viewed only 4,000 times before it was removed, which happened within minutes of notification. Facebook created a digital hash fingerprint to detect further uploads, however by this point the video had been propagated on other sites. Facebook said it had blocked 1.5 million uploads of the video and images from it in the day after the attacks, including edited versions, with most blocking occurring through use of the fingerprint to prevent visibility. Reddit banned "subreddits" named "WatchPeopleDie" and "Gore", saying threads there had glorified the attacks, in violation of user agreements Microsoft, in light of how social media sites handled the content related to the shooting, proposed the establishment of industry-wide standards that would flag such content quickly, and, in the wake of similar major events, operate a joint virtual command center to manage and control the spread of such information via social media. Despite the networks' attempts to self-police, New Zealand officials and other world leaders have asked them to take responsibility for extremist content posted on their services. Australia introduced legislation that would fine content providers and potentially imprison their executives if they do not remove violent imagery of these types of attacks. The French Council of the Muslim Faith filed a lawsuit against Facebook and YouTube, accusing the companies of "broadcasting a message with violent content abetting terrorism, or of a nature likely to seriously violate human dignity and liable to be seen by a minor". Facebook has contested the lawsuit, saying, "Acts of terror and hate speech have no place on Facebook, and our thoughts are with the families of the victims and the entire community affected by this tragedy. We have taken many steps to remove this video from our platform, we are cooperating with the authorities". International: Stuart Bender of Curtin University in Perth noted that the use of live video as an integral part of the attacks "makes them a form of 'performance crime' where the act of video recording and/or streaming the violence by the perpetrator is a central component of the violence itself, rather than being incidental." Just before carrying out the attacks, the gunman said to-camera, "Remember lads, subscribe to PewDiePie", referring to the most subscribed YouTuber at the time, Felix Kjellberg, who goes by the alias PewDiePie who at the time was having a race to 100 million subscribers with Indian music channel T-Series. PewDiePie has been accused of using far-right content in his videos. In response, Kjellberg tweeted, "Just heard news of the devastating reports from New Zealand Christchurch. I feel absolutely sickened having my name uttered by this person. My heart and thoughts go out to the victims, families and everyone affected by this tragedy."—he later called for the phrase to be discontinued. Legacy- Gun laws: Gun laws in New Zealand came under scrutiny in the aftermath, specifically the legality of military-style semi-automatic rifles compared to Australia, which banned them after the Port Arthur massacre in 1996. In 2018, for example, it was reported that of the estimated 1.5 million firearms in New Zealand, 15,000 were registered Military Style Semi-Automatic weapons as well as perhaps 50,000 and 170,000 unregistered A-Category semi-automatics. As Philip Alpers of GunPolicy.org noted, "New Zealand is almost alone with the United States in not registering 96 percent of its firearms ... one can assume that the ease of obtaining these firearms may have been a factor in his decision to commit the crime in Christchurch." Cabinet, however, remains undecided on the creation of a register. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced: "Our gun laws will change, now is the time ... People will be seeking change, and I am committed to that." She continued, "There have been attempts to change our laws in 2005, 2012 and after an inquiry in 2017. Now is the time for change." Attorney-General David Parker was later quoted as saying that the government would ban semi-automatic guns, but subsequently backtracked, saying that the government had not yet committed to anything and that regulations around semi-automatic weapons was "one of the issues" the government would consider. The day after the attacks, some gun-store owners reported an increase in sales, particularly of semi-automatic weapons, in response to the prospect of stricter laws. The New Zealand auction website Trade Me banned the sale of semi-automatic weapons on its platform, and some gun owners responded to the attacks by voluntarily handing in their weapons to police. At a press conference on 18 March, Ardern said details of the proposed reforms would be given by 25 March. On 21 March, she announced a ban, adding that she was working to have legislation in place as early as 11 April. As a transitional measure, from 3:00 pm that day, some semi-automatic rifles and shotguns were classified as requiring the owner to hold a licence with an "E" endorsement. "After a reasonable period for returns, those who continue to possess these firearms will be in contravention of the law," Radio New Zealand reported. A "gun buy-back" scheme was also considered. The Arms (Prohibited Firearms, Magazines, and Parts) Amendment Act 2019 was introduced in the House of Representatives on 1 April, and passed its first reading the following day. The final reading was passed on 10 April, supported by all parties in Parliament except ACT, and it became law by the end of the week. All legally obtained semiautomatic and military-grade firearms and their relevant ammunition were able be handed over to police in a buy-back scheme. On 13 July, the gun buy-back scheme was initiated, where 607 collection points for owners to turn in their prohibited firearms were held. On 20 December, the gun buy-back scheme ended. Provisional data from police show that as of 21 December a total of 33,619 hand-ins had been completed, 56,250 firearms had been collected (51,342 as buy-back and 4,908 under amnesty), 2,717 firearms had been modified, and 194,245 parts had been collected (187,995 as buy-back and 6,250 under amnesty). Police Minister Stuart Nash hailed the buy-back scheme as a success, but Nicole McKee, the spokeswoman of the Council of Licensed Firearms Owners, said that the buyback had been a failure and claimed that there are 170,000 prohibited guns in New Zealand, so "50,000 is not a number to boast about". Royal commission of inquiry: Cabinet agreed to hold an inquiry into the attacks, and announced on 25 March that it would take the form of a royal commission of inquiry. Little told Radio New Zealand, "I have given authority to the agencies to do intrusive activities under warrant, the number of those (warrants) I'm not at liberty to disclose." He said that the intelligence services usually put 30 to 40 people under monitoring at a time. Although more people than usual were being monitored, he was not willing to reveal how many. He also said the operations could be anything from physical surveillance to watching telecommunications activity. On 8 April 2019, Prime Minister Ardern confirmed the terms of reference for the royal commission of inquiry, and announced that Supreme Court justice Sir William Young would chair the inquiry. On 26 November 2020, the Royal Commission formally presented its 792-page report to the government. This report was made public on 8 December. Though it acknowledged there were no signs an attack in New Zealand was imminent at the time, it highlighted failures by the police system to properly vet gun purchases, as well as the country's intelligence services' strong focus on Islamic extremism at the expense of other potential threats such as white supremacy. The report also made 44 recommendations, including the establishment of a new national intelligence agency specialising in counterterrorism strategies. After the report's recommendations were made public, Ardern said the government has agreed to implement all of them. The report also found that YouTube had radicalised the shooter. He Whenua Taurikura: In line with one of the recommendations of the Royal Commission of Inquiry into the terrorist attack on Christchurch masjidain on 15 March 2019, the New Zealand Government held a hui (social gathering) called "He Whenua Taurikura, a country at peace" on 15–16 June 2021 to discuss countering terrorism and violent extremism. The hui was attended by several community, civil society, media, academic, private sector, and government leaders and representatives including Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, New Zealand Security Intelligence Service (NZSIS) Director-General Rebecca Kitteridge, Police Commissioner Andrew Coster, Anjum Rahman of the Islamic Women's Council and representatives from social media giants Facebook and Twitter, Amnesty International New Zealand , and the New Zealand Jewish Council. The hui's stated aims are "to develop options for the National Centre of Excellence, which will focus on generating research and public discussion to prevent and counter violent extremism, understand diversity and promote social cohesion." On 15 June, several Muslim delegates chanted "Free Palestine" and staged a walk-out at the He Whenua Taurikura after NZ Jewish Council spokesperson Juliet Moses criticised Hezbollah and Hamas as terror organisations while discussing a pro-Hezbollah rally in Auckland in 2018. Muslim attendees including Haris Murtaza of the National Islamic Youth Association, the Federation of the Islamic Associations of New Zealand (FIANZ) chair Abdur Razzaq, and Azad Khan of the Foundation against Islamophobia and Racism criticised Moses for her alleged Islamophobia, perceived insensitivity to Muslim mosque shooting survivors, and for injecting the Israel-Palestine conflict into the conference proceedings. Moses later defended her remarks, denying that she was conflating Islam with terrorism but was seeking to raise the security concerns of the New Zealand Jewish commmunity. During the conference, Anjum Rahman of the Islamic Women's Council testified that her group had tried to warn the Government of a potential attack on Muslims in New Zealand. Some delegates including Aliya Danzeisen, Iman Bsivov, and Radiya Ali also related encounters of racism and discrimination. Danzeisen also criticised the insufficient presence of Muslim delegates among the panel. Victoria University of Wellington criminologist Dr Sara Salman and Auckland University of Technology communications lecturer Khairiah Rahman said that counter-terrorism needed to address economic security, structural injustice, racism, and discrimination. Prime Minister Ardern also addressed the conference via video conference. Activist and "Foundation Against Islamophobia and Racism" Valerie Morse also called on Twitter senior director Nick Pickles to take action against a neo-Nazi account. Literature and media: In May 2019, Variety reported that the Egyptian writer and director Moez Masoud was developing a movie titled Hello Brother, based on the shootings. Masoud's proposed film project was criticised by the Muslim Association of Canterbury, Al Noor Masjid, and New Zealand filmmaker Jason Lei Howken for taking advantage of the tragedy and failing to consult the Christchurch Muslim community. In March 2021, survivor Dr Maysoon Salama published an illustrated children's book called Aya And The Butterfly to help children cope with grief, change, and build resilience. Salama's son had perished during the shootings while her husband had been injured. Aya And the Butterfly was part of a four-book series designed to promote an understanding of the New Zealand Muslim community; it was developed by the Islamic Women's Council and published by the Ministry of Education through Lift Education. They Are Us: On 10 June 2021, Glen Basner's FilmNation Entertainment began soliciting funding at the Cannes Virtual Market for a film focusing on Ardern's response to the shootings, titled They Are Us, with Rose Byrne being cast as Ardern, while New Zealander Andrew Niccol was named as its writer. They Are Us will be filmed in New Zealand, with survivors serving as story consultants. Following its announcement, They Are Us attracted criticism on social media for exploiting the shootings for commercial gain, with the hashtag #TheyAreUsShutdown trending on Twitter in New Zealand. The filmmakers' choice to focus on Ardern's response rather than the victims also drew accusations of the white savior trope being in play. A spokesperson for Ardern clarified that Ardern and the New Zealand government had no involvement with the film. Several representatives of the New Zealand Muslim community also questioned the timing and appropriateness of the film. The AM Show host Amanda Gillies described the film as "weird, oddly distasteful and maybe too soon". By 12 June 2021, 29,000 people had signed a petition organised by the National Islamic Youth Association (NIYA) calling for the film to be shut down since it allegedly sidelined victims and survivors and emphasized its focus on Ardern. That same day, Ardern issued a statement confirming that she was not involved nor consulted in the film's development. She added that the shootings remained raw for New Zealand and that "there are plenty of stories from 15 March that could be told, but I don't consider mine to be one of them." On 14 June 2021, producer Philippa Campbell resigned due to the public backlash against the film's production. She said "the events of March 15, 2019, are too raw for film at this time and I do not wish to be involved with a project that is causing such distress." A 124-page draft script was leaked to Newshub in July 2021. It showed that the attack would play out over seventeen pages and would depict fifteen deaths.
Joseph Wayne Wallace was a three-year-old boy who was murdered by his mother in their Chicago, Illinois apartment in 1993. Wallace's mother, Amanda Wallace, was known to be mentally ill. Despite this, Joseph and his younger brother Joshua were removed from a foster family and returned to Amanda, who killed Joseph with an electrical cord. The circumstances of Wallace's death and the ensuing public outcry precipitated large changes in the Illinois child welfare system and the Cook County juvenile court. In June 1996, Amanda Wallace was convicted of her son's murder. She avoided the death penalty which had been sought by the state of Illinois and was instead sentenced to life imprisonment. Amanda committed suicide by hanging in her prison cell on August 3, 1997. Joshua, the only surviving son of Wallace, spent years stuck in the child welfare system. Shortly after Joseph's death Joshua began to display significant emotional and behavioral outbursts, either from witnessing his brother's murder or the continued disruption in his placements. From 1993 to 1995, Joshua lived in the care of Erma and Phillip Lee in Oak Park, Illinois. By May 1995, Joshua was again removed from his only long-term home placement over claims the Lees sought to exploit Joshua for larger state payments. Joshua was adopted by Illinois resident Maria Travis in August 1997. Following his adoption, Joshua's name was legally changed to Joshua Travis. Since 2015, Joshua resides in Park Forest, Illinois.
Anita Lorraine Cobby (née Lynch) was a 26-year-old Australian registered nurse and beauty pageant winner who was kidnapped while walking home from Blacktown railway station after dining out with two Sydney Hospital colleagues in Surry Hills, New South Wales, just before 10:00 p.m. on 2 February 1986, and subsequently sexually assaulted and murdered. Two days after being reported missing, Cobby's body was discovered on a rural farm in Prospect. Investigations led to the arrest of five men who were later convicted of her abduction, rape and murder on 10 June 1987 and each sentenced to life imprisonment, without the possibility of parole, on 16 June 1987. At the time of the killing, Cobby sustained multiple knife wounds and lacerations from barbed wire; her death was a result of a slit throat. The murder received widespread media coverage, condemnation and attention. Early life: Anita Lynch was born in Sydney on 2 November 1959, to Garry Bernard Lynch, a graphic artist with the Royal Australian Air Force, and Grace "Peggy" Lynch, a nurse. As a teenager she participated in beauty pageants, including winning the Miss Western Suburbs Pageant in November 1979, and had a promising career as a model. However, she decided instead to follow in her mother's footsteps and become a nurse. She met her future husband, John Cobby, while studying for her nursing degree at Sydney Hospital. They married on 27 March 1982. At the time of Cobby's murder in 1986, the couple had separated and Cobby was living with her parents in Blacktown, New South Wales. According to John Cobby, he and Anita were on good terms and, when she was murdered, had been planning to reconcile. Murder: Cobby worked in Sydney and commuted daily from her home in Blacktown. On the day of the murder, she finished work at Sydney Hospital at 3 p.m. and met friends for dinner in nearby Redfern. Cobby then caught a train from Central railway station to Blacktown station. Arriving at Blacktown, she would usually ring her father who would pick her up. On the day of her death, she most likely decided to walk home after finding the phone to be out of order and no taxis available at the taxi rank. Aside from her killers, only two witnesses saw Cobby after she left the train station. Cobby was walking alone from the station along Newton Road, Blacktown around 10 p.m., when the gang of five men drove up beside her and stopped their stolen white HT Holden Kingswood. Two men leapt from the car and dragged her into the vehicle, as she kicked and screamed. A 13-year-old boy, his younger sister and mother heard someone screaming from their house directly opposite and had gone outside in time to see Cobby forced into the attackers' car. The boy ran across the road to help, but the car drove off before he reached it. Returning home, he telephoned the police to report what he had seen. A few minutes later, their neighbour and his girlfriend arrived home and, after being told of the abduction, drove off to search for the car. They eventually drove down Reen Road (now known as Peter Brock Drive), Prospect and stopped by the now-empty Holden, where the man used a spotlight to search the adjacent paddock. Seeing nothing in the paddock and believing the car he was looking for was a different model Holden, he returned home. The attackers later stated that they had hidden in the long grass to avoid the spotlight and waited for the man to leave. Once inside the car on Newton Road, Cobby had been ordered to strip off her clothes but refused, begging her attackers to let her go and saying she was married and also menstruating. Her attackers punched Cobby repeatedly, breaking her nose and both cheekbones, before forcing her to perform fellatio on all five men. The attackers then drove to a service station to purchase fuel using money stolen from Cobby's purse. Cobby was then driven down Reen Road to the secluded paddock, while being held down in the car, raped repeatedly, and being continually beaten by her five attackers. They then dragged the brutally beaten Cobby into the paddock along a barbed wire fence, where they dumped her and continued to sexually and physically abuse her for some time. According to his taped confession, one of the attackers, John Travers, then became concerned that Cobby could identify them because she had seen their faces and heard their names, and convinced the other attackers to kill her. Urged on by the others, Travers slit her throat, almost severing her head. Police investigation: When Cobby did not return home, her family initially thought she was staying overnight with a friend, but after learning that she failed to appear at work the next day, they reported her missing on 3 February. On the morning of 4 February, her naked body was found in the paddock by a farmer investigating what his cows were milling around. Cobby's body was initially identified by her distinctive wedding ring, which was still on her finger when she was found. Her estranged husband John was initially suspected of her murder, but was quickly cleared. The Australian public reacted with anger upon hearing details of Cobby's murder. On 6 February, the NSW State Government posted a A$50,000 reward for information leading to the capture of Cobby's killers. Also on 6 February, morning radio host John Laws obtained a leaked copy of Cobby's autopsy report, which contained explicit details of her injuries, and read it live on the air, both shocking and galvanising public sentiment. In a 2016 interview with Seven News, Laws said he did it because he felt "the general public ought to know" and that "it incited anger in the public that murders like this were happening and we weren't being given the full details". On 9 February, police re-enacted Cobby's movements on the night of her disappearance in the hope of jogging the memories of travellers or others who might have seen her. Constable Debbie Wallace wore similar clothing to Cobby and travelled the 9:12 p.m. train to Blacktown. Detectives interviewed the passengers and showed them photos of Cobby whilst Wallace walked the length of the train during the journey. Following a tip-off from a police informant regarding the stolen Holden, police started searching for Travers, Michael Murdoch, and brothers Les, Michael and Gary Murphy after they discovered that some of them had a history of violence, and that Travers had a reputation for carrying a knife. On 21 February, police arrested Travers and Murdoch at the home of Travers' uncle and Les Murphy at Travers' own house. Murdoch and Murphy were charged with offences relating to stolen cars and released on police bail. Travers, who admitted that he had stolen a car, made conflicting statements about the murder and was detained in police custody. While in custody, he requested that a friend be called so she could bring him cigarettes. The phone number was handed to the investigating police who contacted the friend, a woman. The woman, Travers' aunt—eventually dubbed "Miss X"—agreed to help with the investigation, met with an officer, and gave him details of Travers' background. Miss X was subsequently sent back in to talk to Travers, agreeing to hide a recording microphone device in her bra while she visited him in his cell and was able to obtain a confession. Miss X later went to Murdoch's home while wearing the concealed recording device to capture his statements on tape as well. Eventually, five men were arrested and charged with the murder. Police were praised for their quick response in capturing all suspects involved. In total, 22 days had elapsed from the time of the murder to the time all suspects were taken into custody. Perpetrators: The five men charged, who later all pleaded guilty or were convicted of the murder, had over fifty prior convictions for offences including armed robbery, assault, larceny, car theft, breaking and entering, drug use, escaping lawful custody, receiving stolen goods and rape. John Travers: John Raymond Travers, considered the ringleader of the gang, was raised in poverty in Blacktown, the oldest of eight children from unmarried teenage parents. By age 14, he was already an alcoholic, and was expelled from high school during Year 10 for being continually disruptive to other students. Beyond schooling, Travers held few jobs and relied mostly on unemployment benefits as a source of income. He was eventually committed to Boys' Town, a juvenile detention facility, by his mother. His father, with whom he never shared a close relationship, left the household in 1981. Finding it difficult to support the family, Travers relied on crime to provide food, stealing animals such as chickens and ducks from nearby households. The health of Travers' mother eventually deteriorated, and he and his siblings were sent to live with foster families while she was hospitalised. Travers had a history of violent sexual behaviour and bestiality. Witnesses have recounted that on several occasions, he had bought a live sheep for a barbecue and slit the animal's throat as he sodomised it before roasting its carcass on a spit. Michael Murdoch: Michael Murdoch was a childhood friend and criminal associate of Travers. He had also spent a great part of his childhood in juvenile prisons, where he experienced sexual assaults. He was known to have written to politicians during this period of imprisonment seeking protection from such assaults. Murphy brothers: Michael, Gary and Les Murphy, three brothers from a family of nine children, were also accused of the crime. -Michael Murphy, aged 33, was the eldest of the nine Murphy children. He was sent to live with his grandmother when he was 12 years of age. -Gary Murphy, aged 28. A hearing impairment affected Gary's schooling and he left early to seek work. He was noted as being an able and willing worker before the crimes. Gary's strong interest in cars led to him facing several car theft-related charges in the years preceding the murder. He was known to have a very violent temper. -Les Murphy, aged 22, was the youngest of the Murphy children, and was known as having the worst temperament. He had faced Children's Court on many occasions for a number of theft-related offences before being accused of the Cobby murder. Trial: The trial began in Sydney on 16 March 1987. Before proceedings began, Travers changed his plea to guilty. Sydney newspaper The Sun published a front-page story on the day the trial began, carrying the headline "ANITA MURDER MAN GUILTY" alongside a large image of Travers. The news story also referred to Michael Murphy as an unemployed prison escapee of no fixed address, and another in the same paper detailed Murphy's criminal convictions and his recent escape from Silverwater Correctional Centre, where he was serving a 25-year sentence for a string of burglaries and thefts. The jury was discharged due to the potentially prejudicial information published about Murphy. According to the medical examiner's report, Cobby's body showed extensive bruising on her head, breasts, face, shoulders, groin, thighs and legs consistent with "a systematic beating", including a "blow of considerable force around the right eye". She also had lacerations on her hips, thighs and legs from the barbed wire, several cuts to her neck resulting in the severing of her ear and windpipe and near decapitation, and many cuts to her hands and fingers, resulting in the near severing of three of her fingers, which likely occurred when she raised her hands to her face trying to protect herself from the knife. The medical examiner later testified that after Cobby's throat was cut, she would have died within two minutes. He also testified that some radio bulletins purportedly based on his own report contained misinformation about the type and extent of Cobby's injuries. She was not mutilated apart from the slashing of her throat and hands, there had been no attack with a knife on her stomach or genitals, and her shoulders had not been dislocated. The trial for the remaining members of the gang lasted 54 days, with the men's defence relying on convincing the jury of their minimal involvement in the beating and murder. On 10 June 1987, all five were found guilty of sexual assault and murder. On 16 June, they were each sentenced in the Supreme Court of New South Wales to life imprisonment plus additional time without the possibility of parole. Justice Alan Maxwell described the crime as, "One of the most horrifying physical and sexual assaults. This was a calculated killing done in cold blood. The Executive should grant the same degree of mercy they bestowed on their victim." Aftermath: Cobby's parents would join forces with Christine and Peter Simpson, the parents of murder victim Ebony Simpson, to create the Homicide Victims' Support Group (Aust) Inc.—a community support group that helps families deal with heinous crimes. The Lynches also campaigned in seeking tougher sentencing and truth in sentencing laws, which eventuated after Cobby's murder. Cobby's father Garry Lynch died on 14 September 2008, aged 90, suffering from Alzheimer's disease. Her mother, Grace, died of lung cancer in 2013, at the age of 88. The Lynches had been married for 54 years at the time of Garry's death. Imprisonment: As of 2021, John Travers was housed in Wellington Correctional Centre in maximum security. In 1988 he was transferred to Maitland Gaol and was housed there until 1992, when he was transferred to Goulburn Correctional Centre. In 1996, he and another inmate were being transported from Goulburn to Long Bay Hospital at Long Bay Correctional Complex when they attempted to escape from the prison van by hacksawing through and kicking in the back door. When the attempt was noticed, the van pulled over at Bowral Police Station, and the two were arrested and charged. Travers was regularly kept in protection at the Goulburn because he was often involved in bloody fights with other inmates and threatening prison staff. From 2005 to 2015 Travers was housed in Lithgow Correctional Centre. Travers was eventually transferred to Wellington Correctional Centre. Michael Murphy was housed in Long Bay Correctional Complex in maximum security. In 1988, Michael was housed along with his brother Gary in the newly built Special Protection Unit in Long Bay Correctional Complex. In 1992, he was transferred to Lithgow Correctional Centre, where he undertook Year 10 studies and did weekly work. A few years later Michael Murphy was transferred to Goulburn Correctional Centre, where he spent most his imprisonment and he usually kept to himself and stayed out of trouble. In May 2015, he was reclassified to medium security until July 2015, when he was reclassified back to maximum security. In 2018 Murphy was transferred from Goulburn to Long Bay due to deteriorating health. In September 2018 it was reported that he had terminal cancer and was living in palliative care. He died in Long Bay Hospital on 21 February 2019 at the age of 66. As of 2021, Gary Murphy was housed in Goulburn Correctional Centre in maximum security. In 1988, he was housed along with his brother Michael Murphy in the newly built Special Protection Unit in Long Bay Correctional Complex. A few years later, Gary Murphy was transferred to Maitland Gaol Correctional Centre, where he was housed till the prison's closure. In 2005 he was placed in Goulburn Correctional Centre and was housed there until June 2019. In mid-June 2019 he was transferred from Goulburn to Long Bay Correctional Complex. On the morning of 25 June 2019, he was severely beaten by several other prisoners in shower block of 10 Wing in Long Bay and was transferred to hospital in a critical condition. On 23 August 2020 it was revealed by the Daily Telegraph that Murphy at some point had been moved back from Long Bay to Goulburn. As of 2021, Les Murphy was housed in Goulburn Correctional Centre in maximum security. There were a long list of associates in the Goulburn Centre he was not allowed to have contact with. In 2005, he got into trouble for failing a urine test. As of 23 August 2020 it was revealed by the Daily Telegraph that Murphy was still serving his sentence at Goulburn. Michael Murdoch was formerly a maximum-security inmate at Goulburn Correctional Centre until December 1999 when he was reclassified to medium security and transferred to Bathurst Correctional Complex. In 2002, Murdoch was reclassified as maximum security and transferred to Lithgow Correctional Centre. After the death of Michael Murphy, as of 22 February 2019, NSW Corrective Services confirmed the four other offenders were still alive and were still serving their life sentences in various maximum-security correctional centres across New South Wales, but it could not be revealed where they were currently being housed. Media: -The murder has been covered by several true crime television series, including Crime Investigation Australia in 2006, Crime Stories in 2008, and Australian Families of Crime in 2010. The case was covered by Casefile True Crime Podcast on 22 July 2017. It has also been the subject of several books (see Further reading). -The Australian social-realist film The Boys (1998), directed by Rowan Woods, is, in part, inspired by the Cobby murder and follows the journey of three brothers leading up to a similar crime. -In February 2016, at the time of the 30th anniversary of the murder, police released the taped confessions of Travers and Murdoch that were obtained by Miss X. Seven News broadcast a documentary, 7 News Investigates: Anita Cobby — You Thought You Knew It All, which included the newly released taped confessions and John Cobby's first televised interview about his wife's murder. Memorial: -A park in Sullivan Street, Blacktown was named Anita Cobby Reserve in memory of Cobby.