8 Oct 2014

Guilty plea in homeless killing case

4:31 pm on 8 October 2014

The cousin of a homeless man murdered behind shops in Auckland says the family is pleased they will not now have to go through the ordeal of a trial.

49-year-old homeless man, Maqbool Hussain.

49-year-old homeless man, Maqbool Hussain. Photo: NZ POLICE

Justin Vance Turner pleaded guilty today at the High Court in Auckland to the murder of 49-year-old Maqbool Hussain behind shops on Dominion Road in March this year.

According to the police summary of facts, Turner and Mr Hussain were living on the streets of Auckland and Mr Hussain had made his home in a storage area behind the shops.

About an hour after a visit from police on 24 March, Mr Turner punched and kicked Mr Hussain before repeatedly stomping on his head.

Turner went on the run, but police caught up with him a week later in Taupo. He told police that he hated Mr Hussain and was after cigarettes and money.

Mr Hussain's cousin, Aurang Zeb, was in court this morning and said the victim had the love and support of his family who had tried to help him. He said Mr Hussain was found by his brother when he went to drop some lunch off.

Mr Zeb said Mr Hussain's daughter had planned on travelling to New Zealand from Australia for the trial.

Turner is due to be sentenced in December.

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