James Ihaka

James Ihaka is a Herald reporter based in Hamilton.

Surprise guilty plea in horror crash

Hetaraka Hikurangi Reihana. Photo / Alan Gibson
Hetaraka Hikurangi Reihana. Photo / Alan Gibson

A man has pleaded guilty to two charges of manslaughter stemming from a horror crash in 2011.

Hetaraka Hikurangi Reihana changed his earlier not guilty plea to the charges this morning at the Hamilton High Court.

The charges stem from a Christmas Day car accident in which teenage sisters Merepeka and Brooklyn Morehu Clark were killed.

The plea came today as both the Crown and defence were about to sum up their cases.

Reihana expressed his "profound regret" at the deaths of his two cousins.

He is to be sentenced at the Hamilton High Court on May 31.

Reihana's two co-accused, the girls' mother Phillippa Vanessa Morehu and Haki Tetuere Davey, have maintained their not guilty pleas.

The defence for both is about to summarise.

- NZ Herald

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