4.00pm

A Muslim youth was jailed for three years today for killing his uncle after he made a homosexual advance.

Amsheen Arif Ali, now 17, of Papatoetoe was cleared of murdering his uncle by marriage, Colin Hart, but was found guilty of his manslaughter.

At the High Court in Auckland today Justice Hugh Williams said that Mr Hart made what Ali considered a homosexual advance, hugging him and rubbing his hands over his body and trying to kiss his neck.

At the trial there was evidence that Mr Hart was attracted to young Indian boys, and the judge said that his actions on the evening of October 26 last year may have confirmed what Ali had heard of his uncle's proclivities.

According to Ali, who was 16 at the time, he rebuffed and pushed his uncle away a number of times, but he continued his advances.

Justice Williams said that the jury's verdict meant they must have accepted that at that point Ali lost the power of self-control and stabbed Mr Hart five times in the back, chest and neck.

The judge said Ali told the jury he feared he was going to be raped.

He told police that Mr Hart made a homosexual advance, but the judge said that the first time rape was mentioned was at the trial.

The court heard that Ali drank a small amount of alcohol and took some cannabis that Mr Hart gave him during a barbecue party at Mr Hart's Mangere address.

Defence lawyer Mary Tuilotolava said that when he was kissed, Ali -- a devout Muslim with a strong faith -- deliriously grabbed the knife, believing he was going to be raped.

"The deceased committed a serious breach of trust in that he tried to force himself sexually on a young and drugged boy," she said.

Justice Williams said that it was significant that afterwards neither Ali nor an associate called police or ambulance, and did nothing to help the injured man.

Ali took Mr Hart's car and drove aimlessly around Auckland with his friend and two other people.

Ali told them he killed someone, but the judge said it might be noteworthy that he made no mention to them of any homosexual advance.

Ali then dumped the car after wiping off his fingerprints and taking the radio and CD stacker in an effort to make it look like a "botched job".

Crown prosecutor Mina Wharepouri said that what Ali did after the stabbing had an element of "callous indifference" but the defence said it was shock-induced denial.

The prosecution sought a six-year term, while the defence asked for a sentence of no more than two years to allow Ali to apply for home detention.

Justice Williams took into account mitigating factors, including Ali's age, lack of previous convictions, his faith, his naivete and the need for rehabilitation.

He sentenced Ali to three years prison, with 12 months to be served concurrently for car conversion and theft.

- HERALD STAFF