A judge has jailed the nephew of Mana MP Hone Harawira for beating a boy, describing him as a gutless and cowardly thug.
Mau Harawira, 30, pleaded guilty at Auckland District Court in May this year to theft and injuring with intent to injure and was jailed on Monday for three years and two months.
The court was told that Harawira was drinking with friends at a beach in August last year where the boy was playing when he took offence at something the 12-year-old said.
Harawira then chased the boy into his home in the Auckland suburb of Blockhouse Bay where he punched, slapped and dragged him through the house before robbing him.
The boy needed hospital treatment after the beating.
Belinda Sellars, the lawyer for Harawira, told the court her client makes no excuses and is sorry for what he did. She said he has stopped drinking and taken anger management classes.
But Judge David Harvey said Mau Harawira was a gutless and cowardly thug whose motives were completely irrelevant to the attack.
The judge described the shock, anger and despair felt by the victim's family at having their home invaded and their child beaten.