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The boy, whose name is suppressed, appeared in the Auckland Youth Court today where police laid a charge of the manslaughter of father-of-two Arun Kumar.
The boy entered no plea to that and an existing charge of assaulting Mr Kumar with intent to rob him at his Railside Diary in Henderson earlier this month.
The 12-year-old, whose family watched on from the public gallery, will next appear in the High Court at Auckland next month, and will remain in custody until then.
He is charged alongside a 13-year-old boy, whose name is also suppressed. He appeared in the High Court this morning and entered no pleas to one charge each of murdering Mr Kumar and assaulting him wit intent to rob.
Justice Graham Lang said the 13-year-old would stand trial in November, and the Youth Court was told today it was intended the 12-year-old would also face trial then.
The 13-year-old will stay in custody until his next appearance in August. Before then a forensic report will be undertaken to assess the boy's fitness to plead.
"I'm not satisfied that he will be able to understand the seriousness of the charges and the court needs to be satisfied of that," his lawyer Maria Pecotic told the High Court.
Justice Lang decided the 13-year-old's name suppression would continue for fair trial reasons and because it could result in extreme hardship for the boy. The judge said suppression would likely continue until the trial.
Members of the 13-year-old's family arrived in court just as he appeared and yelled support for him as he was taken into custody: "Love you bro" and "be strong baby, I love you," they said.
Mr Kumar, 57, was stabbed in the neck in front of his wife about 7.30am on June 10.