Saturday 1 October 2016

Labour politician Jo Cox murder accused appears in court under 'terrorism protocol'

Emily Pennink

Published 20/06/2016 | 15:15

MP Jo Cox taking part in a Westminister charity event
MP Jo Cox taking part in a Westminister charity event

The man accused of murdering Labour MP Jo Cox was brought before a senior judge at the Old Bailey under the "terrorism protocol".

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Thomas Mair, 52, is accused of shooting and stabbing Mrs Cox, 41, outside her constituency surgery in Birstall, near Leeds, last Thursday.

He is charged with murder, grievous bodily harm, possession of a firearm with intent to commit an indictable offence and possession of an offensive weapon.

Mair, from Birstall, made his first crown court appearance before Mr Justice Sweeney via video link from top security Belmarsh prison.

A sketch of Thomas Mair as he appeared in court yesterday. Photo: PA
A sketch of Thomas Mair as he appeared in court yesterday. Photo: PA

During the brief hearing, he spoke only to confirm his name - unlike his first appearance at magistrates' court when he declared: "Death to traitors, freedom for Britain."

Grey-bearded Mair sat with his arms folded beside a prison officer. He wore beige trousers and a white long-sleeved t-shirt.

Labour MP Jo Cox. Photo: PA
Labour MP Jo Cox. Photo: PA

There was no application for bail and he was remanded in custody.

He will appear at the same court for a preliminary hearing before Mr Justice Saunders at 10am on Thursday.

Former councillor Killian Forde pleaded guilty to hoax calls Picture PA
Former councillor Killian Forde pleaded guilty to hoax calls Picture PA

Cases under the terrorism protocol are managed by senior judges, usually sitting at the Old Bailey.

Mr Justice Saunders is expected to set a timetable for Mair's case at the next hearing.

From left: MPs Lucy Smith, Jeff Smith, and Paula Sheriff leave floral tributes close to where their colleague Jo Cox was murdered on Thursday in Birstall, England. Photo: Getty
From left: MPs Lucy Smith, Jeff Smith, and Paula Sheriff leave floral tributes close to where their colleague Jo Cox was murdered on Thursday in Birstall, England. Photo: Getty

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