A man has been found guilty of a charge of manslaughter despite brutally killing another man who he claims made sexual advances on him.

Hungarian tourist Ferdinand Ambach, who was visiting New Zealand, severely beat 69 year old Ronald Brown with a banjo before stuffing the instrument’s neck down his throat.

Instead of the more sever charge of murder, Ambach was instead found guilty of manslaughter, and faces a maximum penalty of life imprisonment when he is sentenced next month.

Ambach’s defence was that Brown, who was gay, made unwanted sexual advances towards him after the two met at a bar and went back to Brown’s apartment. At the trial, his lawyer raised the possibility that Brown may have attempted to rape Ambach, which triggered “a monstrous rage” within him.

Brown died in hospital after his battered body was found in his flat on December 7 2007.

While gay rights advocate Neville Creighton said on Friday that he could understand the jury’s conclusion of manslaughter, as it appeared that there had not been evidence of premeditation, the gay community would want a sentence that reflected the seriousness of the attack.

“There’s a difference between justice and revenge, but it would need to be a just sentence and not a slap on the wrist,” he said.

“If this sort of panic is an acceptable defence, then every woman who has an unacceptable advance made to her would have a right to attack and kill the guy, which is patently stupid,” he said.

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