Accused Claremont killer denies murders
THE man accused of the Claremont serial killings has been formally arraigned in the Supreme Court of Western Australia ahead of a lengthy trial next year.
Bradley Robert Edwards pleaded not guilty in Stirling Gardens Magistrates Court in July to all charges against him including the murders of 23-year-old Jane Rimmer, 27-year-old Ciara Glennon and Sarah Spiers, 18, in 1996 and 1997.
All three women were last seen in the Claremont entertainment strip in Perth's affluent western suburbs after a night out.
The bodies of Ms Rimmer, a childcare worker, and Ms Glennon, a lawyer, were discovered in bushland weeks after they were killed, but the body of Ms Spiers, a secretary, has never been found.
The 49-year-old is also accused of attacking an 18-year-old woman in her Huntingdale home in 1988 and raping a 17-year-old girl in Karrakatta in 1995.
Edwards, who was a Little Athletics coach and reportedly an electrical engineer, was formally arraigned in the Supreme Court on Friday when he again had the charges read to him and entered not guilty pleas to all eight.
At his first appearance in the same court earlier this month, prosecutors applied for a trial before a judge sitting without a jury.
That was expected considering the huge amount of media coverage about the case over the past 22 years and will be determined at a hearing on November 1 when the extent of disclosure of sensitive material to the defence team will also be discussed.
It will take up to two months to hear pre-trial applications and Edwards may continue to appear in court via video link from jail, rather than appear in person, until the trial.
He has been at Hakea prison since he was charged with two of the murders in December 2016.
Trial dates, starting May 1, have been set aside.
The case, dubbed Operation Macro, has gripped WA for decades and is believed to be Australiaâ€™s longest-running and most expensive police investigation.