A man who fired an air rifle at members of All Black Beauden Barrett's family has pleaded guilty to recklessly discharging a firearm.
Eugene Loui Nuku, 46, appeared in the Hawera District Court this morning.
The incident took place in Pungarehu on December 19.
The police summary of facts obtained by the Wanganui Chronicle stated Kevin Barrett and son Blake drove to Pungarehu Rd in a ute at about 10.30pm intending to chop down a pine tree and take it home as a Christmas tree.
"While Barrett senior was cutting down the pine tree, the defendant watched him from the front door of his house," the summary of facts said.
Police allege the Barretts then placed the tree in the rear of the ute.
"As they drove past the defendant's house towards the main road, the defendant shot at their vehicle with a high powered .177 calibre Stoeger air rifle."
The documents stated Nuku told police he had shot at the vehicle to mark it so he could identify it later.
In court Nuku, representing himself, said the shots were not reckless and he was protecting his property.
"He was out stealing my stuff... stealing a tree off my neighbours. I fired it to protect my property," Nuku said.
"It's cost my family more than it's cost theirs," he said. "The police refuse to arrest them because of who they are."
Nuku was convicted and remanded to appear for sentencing on May 24.
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