England

Christopher Halliwell faces murder trial 'next year'

Sian O'Callaghan (left) and Becky Godden-Edwards
Image caption Miss Godden-Edwards' remains were found by police investigating Miss O'Callaghan's murder

A taxi driver accused of murdering Sian O'Callaghan and Becky Godden-Edwards could face a trial next year, a court has heard.

Christopher Halliwell, 47, of Swindon, appeared via video link at Bristol Crown Court after being charged with Miss Godden-Edwards' murder on Monday.

A plea and case management hearing has already been fixed for 14 July.

Judge Neil Ford QC, Recorder of Bristol, said if the case was contested any trial would be held in January.

Mr Halliwell, of Ashbury Avenue, was charged in March with the murder of Miss O'Callaghan, 22, who went missing last December after leaving a Swindon nightclub.

The remains of Miss Godden-Edwards, who would have celebrated her 29th birthday in April, were discovered at Eastleach in Gloucestershire by police investigating Miss O'Callaghan's murder.

Mr Halliwell is accused of murdering Miss Godden-Edwards in Swindon on a day between 27 December 2002 and 1 January 2006.

There was no application for bail and Mr Halliwell was remanded into custody.

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