British MP murder suspect to be tried in November

A woman passes floral tributes to murdered MP Jo Cox outside Batley Town Hall as she arrives to vote in the EU referendum in Batley, northern England on June 23, 2016.
PHOTO: AFP

London - The alleged murderer of British lawmaker Jo Cox, whose shock killing cast a cloud over the final week of Brexit campaigning, will be tried in November under anti-terrorism legislation, a judge ruled Thursday (June 23).

Thomas Mair, 52, made a brief appearance via video link at London's Old Bailey central criminal court, and spoke from prison only to confirm his name, as Britain voted in a referendum that could make it the first country to leave the European Union.

Mair is charged with murder and possession of a firearm and the case is being heard under the "terrorism protocol".

At his first court hearing on Saturday, Mair had said his name was "Death to traitors, freedom for Britain".

Cox was shot and stabbed to death last Thursday as she was on her way to meet local residents in her constituency in Birstall in northern England.

The brutal street killing of Cox, a pro-EU lawmaker who had defended immigration and refugee rights, shocked the nation and led to a three-day suspension in campaigning ahead of the EU referendum.

Judge John Saunders set a provisional trial date for November 14, with a plea hearing set for October 4.

Mair will next appear before the court on September 19.

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