A well-known New Zealand comedian has pleaded guilty to a charge of performing an indecent act on a child, a lesser offence to what he was initially charged with.

The man appeared at the Auckland District Court this morning where he was due to stand trial but instead pleaded guilty after defence and prosecution counsels struck a deal.

He has name suppression.

Judge Philippa Cunningham said the suppression order was in place to protect the identity of the child.

The man had previously been charged with unlawful sexual connection.

Judge Philippa Cunningham indicated she would not impose a custodial sentence when the man next appears before the court on May 26.

The reasons for the change of charge were given in closed court, and the media were not allowed in.

The man was arrested after an incident in December 2009.

He was remanded today on bail.

- with NZPA