A teen who has admitted interfering with a dead body will have to wait another month before his case comes to an end.

Maurice Ututaonga, 18, appeared in the Rotorua District Court today having pleaded guilty to a charge of interfering with the remains of Jason Lines' body.

Today's hearing was to dispose of the case in anticipation he had completed diversion.

Diversion is offered to first-time offenders and sees them complete alternative tasks ordered by police, resulting in the charge being withdrawn and no conviction entered.


However, his lawyer, Jonathan Temm, said despite efforts from his client, the police had not begun the process with Ututaonga yet.

He said he had "prodded" the police over the matter and they had agreed to start the process tomorrow.

Judge Greg Hollister Jones said he would remand Ututaonga on existing bail to reappear on May 3.

"If all goes well you will be coming back to court [after that]."

Lines died when his fishing dinghy capsized crossing the Bowentown Bar, south of Waihi Beach, on November 20. Two people survived the capsize and Lines' body washed ashore seven days later.

Lines was buried at a Rotorua urupa and eight people were charged with interfering with the remains on December 2.

A co-accused, Tiger Ross, 18, is also carrying out diversion and will reappear in court on April 23.

Sebastien Wineera, 22, Rhys James Phillips, a forest worker, 25, Ryan Rawiri Lingman, a fencer, 25, and Shannon Shiloh Apirana, 28, have pleaded not guilty and will appear on May 2 for a trial callover.


Two youths who were originally jointly charged have had their charges dropped.