Police believe children with Marokopa man Thomas Phillips

Source: 1News

Police believe Marokopa man Thomas Phillips, who has a warrant out for his arrest, is once again missing with his three children.

Clockwise from left: Tom Phillips, Jayda, Maverick and Ember.

Phillips originally went missing with his children near the isolated North Island west coast settlement of Marokopa in September 2021, sparking a large search by police, search and rescue, and locals.

Concern came after Phillips' ute was, at the time, found below the tideline at Kiritehere Beach.

The family were missing for several weeks, and the search was eventually suspended.

They emerged from the bush on September 30. Phillips was later charged with wasting police time.

The maximum penalty, according to court documents seen by 1News, is three months imprisonment or a $2000 fine.

On Wednesday, Phillips was supposed to appear by video link at the Te Kuiti District Court before Judge Phillip Clayton, but his lawyer, Garth O'Brien, confirmed he was not present.

Judge Clayton approved a warrant for his arrest.

Waikato West Area Commander Inspector Will Loughrin said police were receiving "useful information" over Phillips' whereabouts and believe he has his three children with him.