A Dunedin man has admitted indecently assaulting a 13-year-old girl who was babysitting at a house in Timaru early last year.

Riki James Koiatu's guilty pleas on four charges of indecent assault came after a jury had been selected and sworn to hear his retrial in the Dunedin District Court yesterday.

Koiatu, 35, originally faced a charge of sexually violating the girl, as well as three charges of indecently assaulting her. He denied all charges and went on trial in the Dunedin District Court in February.

But the hearing ended in a mistrial and another trial was scheduled.


A new jury was sworn in yesterday to hear the second trial but, following discussions between Crown counsel Robin Bates and defence counsel John Westgate, and consultation with the complainant and her mother, the sexual violation charge was amended to one of doing an indecent act on a young person by indecent assault.

When Koiatu was asked to plead again to the four charges, including the amended charge, he entered guilty pleas.

Judge Kevin Phillips convicted him on all four charges and remanded him on bail for sentence on September 18. The judge called for emotional harm and victim impact reports and also directed that Koiatu undergo alcohol and drug assessments as it appeared he had been drunk at the time of the offending.