Two brothers who admitted assaulting Prime Minister John Key at Waitangi in February, were today each sentenced to community work.

John Junior Popata, 33, a researcher, and his brother Wikatana, 19, described as an interviewer, both from the Far North hapu of Ngati Kahu, each pleaded guilty to a charge of assaulting Mr Key as he was about to enter the Te Tii Marae on Waitangi Day.

In Kaikohe District Court today, Judge John McDonald rejected defence pleas to discharge the brothers without conviction and sentenced each to 100 hours community work.

The pair had pleaded not guilty at an earlier court appearance but changed their pleas to guilty at today's hearing.