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Two charged with murder of RNZ journalist

Wednesday 14 Dec 2011
Two men have appeared in the Wellington District Court charged with the murder of Radio New Zealand journalist Phillip Cottrell, TVNZ reports.

Phillip Cottrell

The 43-year-old was found unconscious on a street in central Wellington early on Saturday morning and died from his injuries on Sunday.

A 17-year-old and 19-year-old were charged this morning and made a brief appearance in court this afternoon.

The identity of one of them, the 17-year-old, is suppressed, while the 19-year-old was named as Nicho Allan Waipuka.

A TVNZ reporter said the 17-year-old looked visibly upset in the dock and Mr Waipuka just stared ahead.

Both accused have been remanded in custody. The 17-year-old is due back in court on 16 December while Mr Waipuka will reappear on 21 December.

Neither has entered any plea.

Mr Cottrell, a radio bulletin editor, was allegedly attacked in Boulcott St about 5.30 a.m. on Saturday as he walked home from work.

His life support was switched off on Sunday and preliminary post mortem results indicated he suffered multiple fractures to his head, neck and left arm, as well as extensive brain injuries.