The judge settled on a starting point of 5 ½ years in prison for the wounding with reckless disregard - the same as Karekare's co-offenders - with an additional 6 months for the conspiracy to pervert the course of justice charge

Discounts were given for his youth, remorse, previous good character, rehabilitation and his late guilty plea.

The final prison sentence was 3 years and 6 months.

Justice Whata had some parting words for Anaru Karekare.

"The victim called you 'wannabes'. Whatever the significance of being called a 'wannabe' is in your world, it was no justification for your reaction.

"Your reaction shows several factors. You idolised violence. Your former life goal was to become not just to join the Mongrel Mob, but to be one of the toughest members.

"A prison sentence will expose you to an environment, and it's naive to think otherwise, where brutal violence is idolised. Hold the course and follow a different path."

Outside the courtroom, Gloria Waitapu said she was overwhelmed by the emotion of the hearing.

But she had special thanks for the empathy and support of the police, in particular detectives Jonathan Scott and Jon McKenzie.

Their boss, Detective Sergeant Darren Thomas, said Kodie Waitapu could very easily have died from his injuries from the alcohol-fuelled assault.

"In the wake of a near death, we'd just ask people to take care of your mates when you're drinking," said Thomas.

"If they've had too much to drink, if they're a danger to themselves or others, them out of their before their behaviour gets out of control."