Three men have pleaded guilty to manslaughter in relation to the death of Whanganui man James Butler in April 2018.

They are Dwayne Anson Tewhenua Fore, Kemp Rangitahae Rippon and Daniel Shane Whareaorere, Stuff reported. They made their guilty pleas in Whanganui District Court on Friday.

Butler was surprised at his Putiki home by the arrival of a group of men in Black Power bandannas on April 22, 2018. His brother Brent was also present, and during the altercation that followed James Butler was shot and his brother was wounded.

Rippon pleaded guilty to wounding Brent Butler with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.

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Mark Robert Audain also pleaded guilty to a charge of attempting to pervert the course of justice.

The trial of a total of eight men charged in relation to the incident began in the High Court at Whanganui in March, but was postponed due to the Covid-19 lockdown.

Four others who face charges are yet to be tried, Stuff reported.