British banker's murder trial in Hong Kong adjourned until July

HONG KONG - A court in Hong Kong on Monday adjourned the trial of a 29-year-old British banker charged with killing two women until July because of the length of time needed for prosecutors to prepare their case.

Rurik Jutting, who had worked at Bank of America Corp in Hong Kong, was charged earlier this month after police found the bodies of the women in his apartment. One was put inside a suitcase on his balcony, authorities have said.

Local media have described the two victims as prostitutes from Indonesia.

Jutting had undergone a psychiatric assessment over the past two weeks but his lawyer, Michael Vidler, would not comment on the findings, saying he had not had time to review the reports.

Prosecutors said they would need 28 weeks to examine the large amount of exhibits and other evidence. The next hearing would be on July 6, but could be brought forward if needed, judge Bina Chainrai said.

Sporting a thick dark beard and mustache and wearing the same black T-shirt with New York emblazoned across the front that he has worn in his previous two court appearances, Jutting said he understood he would remain in custody until next year.

Vidler said Jutting did not react to the length of time it would take.

"We just advised him that we'd be asking more reasons as to why it was going to be taking eight months. We've got that. In the end we had no objection," Vidler told reporters.

Jutting has yet to enter a plea.

Bank of America has previously said Jutting was an employee until recently but it has not said why he left the bank or given a specific timeframe for his departure.