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Kiwi charged with murder in US prison

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 8/02/2017

Jail © Getty Images Jail A New Zealand man could face the death penalty after being charged with the murder of a fellow inmate in a San Diego prison.

Aucklander Clinton Thinn, 29, is the step-brother of cabinet minister Nikki Kaye who says it is a "difficult and sad" time for the family.

Thinn is accused of killing the inmate in the George Bailey Detention Facility, where he has been held since a botched bank robbery last year.

According to the San Diego sherrif's office, Thinn is charged with first-degree murder and seven other charges.

Ms Kaye, who is in line to become education minister in May, said in a statement on Thursday "this is a difficult and sad time for all those affected by what has happened".

"As this is before the courts I will not be commenting further."

Thinn will appear in court on the murder charge on March 6.

A photo posted by Clinton Thinn (@clint12) on

He was allegedly involved in an incident in prison which resulted in the death of a prisoner.

It came after he had pledged allegiance to the white supremacist Aryan Brotherhood group, a friend told the New Zealand Herald.

Another friend told the paper Thinn had some personal issues and should never have left the country.

Thinn was in jail after he allegedly tried to rob a bank in San Diego, armed with a hammer and a flare gun in June last year.

However police descended on the bank and he was arrested, according to an NBC report.

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