Sir David Amess: ​murder suspect Ali Harbi Ali to face trial in March

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  • David Amess
    British politician (1952–2021)
 (Handout)
(Handout)

The man accused of the murder of Conservative MP Sir David Amess has been remanded in custody to face a trial in March next year.

Ali Harbi Ali, 25, is accused of stabbing to death Sir David as the politician conducted a constituency surgery at Belfairs Methodist Church in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex, last Friday.

Ali appeared via videolink from maximum security HMP Belmarsh on Friday afternoon for a first appearance at the Old Bailey.

Mr Justice Sweeney told the short hearing a trial has been penciled in to start on March 7 next year, as he remanded Ali back into custody.

“I have been nominated as the trial judge”, he added.

Sir David Amess (PA Media)
Sir David Amess (PA Media)

Ali was arrested shortly after the stabbing of Sir David, and appeared in the dock for the first time on Thursday afternoon at Westminster magistrates court. That hearing was told the attack on Sir David is said to have been inspired by Islamic State.

The veteran MP suffered multiple stab wounds to his chest and stomach, and was pronounced dead at the scene of the attack.

Ali is of Somali descent, and reportedly had trained as a technician in the radiology department at King’s College Hospital in London.

He spoke only to say “yes” twice at to Friday’s court appearance, wearing prison-issue grey clothes and a white face mask as he followed proceedings from a Belmarsh video booth.

Ali, from Kentish Town, has not entered any pleas to the charges of murder and preparation of terrorist acts.

He is due to appear in court again on November 5, when a timetable for trial preparations will be set.

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