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Police catch murderer with Mr Big op

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 22/06/2016 Lydia Anderson

A double murderer thought he'd got away with killing an innocent woman and her child, until a seemingly innocent knock at the door led to his undoing.

Kamal Reddy, 43, was found guilty on May 13 of murdering Mubarak Yusuf, 24, and her three-year-old child, Juwairiyah "Jojo" Kalim in 2006.

Their bodies lay undiscovered, buried under an Auckland bridge for almost eight years until Reddy unwittingly confessed to undercover police in 2014.

Reddy was sentenced in the High Court in Auckland on Wednesday to life imprisonment with a minimum non-parole period of 21 years.

Justice Raynor Asher has lifted most suppressions on the police undercover operation, which can now be revealed for the first time.

Police posed as a "Mr Big" criminal gang, with one undercover officer gaining Reddy's trust over several months until he confessed.

A female undercover officer knocked on Reddy's door in April 2014, posing as a market surveyor.

She then phoned Reddy and told him he'd won prizes, but the out-of-work mechanic turned them down, thinking there must be some catch.

At this point police knew they had to change tactics.

The officer asked for Reddy's help to help value a car being taken as security for an unpaid loan.

This was Reddy's introduction to a male undercover officer who posed as a gang member and a friend, persuading Reddy to run odd jobs for small amounts of cash.

The jobs became gradually more criminal in nature, and over several months Reddy helped buy and move supposedly stolen items, witnessed a fake brothel madam hand over her profits to police, and witnessed a so-called dodgy cop hand over documents in a supermarket car park for cash.

He became firmly entrenched in what he thought was the criminal underworld, and participated fully and enthusiastically in the set-up scenarios, the undercover officer said in evidence during his trial.

The gang then became "aware" that Reddy was the main suspect in a double murder case, and pressured him to confess to their boss so he could help Reddy.

The officer explained to Reddy that honesty was a key quality in his gang, that the boss could interfere with police investigations as long as gang members were completely honest with him.

Reddy's decision to confess was no doubt influenced by helping to destroy evidence - handed over to the gang by a uniformed "crooked" cop - from a set-up sexual assault case involving another undercover cop.

In October 2014, he sat down with the gang's boss, Mr Big, in Wellington, where he confessed to the killings.

He took his new friend, the undercover officer, to the grave site, where police later dug up the bodies while the gang sent Reddy out of town on an errand.

The next day the undercover officer took Reddy to McDonalds in Manukau, and left him sitting alone at a table while he went to make a call.

He never came back. Instead uniformed police swooped in on Reddy, arresting him for the murders.

Reddy asked to call his new friend, but instead police played him a voice recording from the officer, who revealed his true identity.

With that, Reddy's world collapsed.

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