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British man dies in NZ plane crash

A British man and a New Zealand man have died after their small plane crashed in New Zealand.

Police said 46-year-old Christopher Howell, of Britain, and Christopher Rawlings, 48, of Clive, New Zealand, died yesterday when the Piper Tomahawk plane they were flying crashed in a riverbed near the North Island town of Hastings.

Police say Mr Howell was at the controls at the time of the crash. They say he was intending to obtain a New Zealand pilot licence.

It is not clear what caused the crash and the country's Civil Aviation Authority is investigating.

The plane was owned by a local aviation club.

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