HONG KONG (AP) — A British banker accused of the murders of two Indonesian women appeared briefly Thursday in a Hong Kong court, where pretrial proceedings were adjourned for five more weeks as prosecutors requested more time.
Rurik Jutting is charged with the murders of Sumarti Ningsih on Oct. 27 and Seneng Mujiasih on Nov. 1.
Jutting called the police to his apartment on the edge of Hong Kong's Wan Chai nightlife and red light district, where they found the bodies of the two women, according to a police statement at the time.
Sumarti's body, with injuries to the neck, was found stuffed into a suitcase left on the upscale apartment's 31st floor balcony while Seneng's body had cuts to her neck and buttock. A knife was found at the scene.
When asked if he understood a list of charges amended to include Seneng's name, Jutting said "I do" to each charge but was otherwise expressionless.
Eastern Court magistrate Jason Wan adjourned the case until May 8 after prosecutors said they needed more time to file documents to make their case against Jutting.
Defense lawyer Tim Parker said "there seems to be some yo-yoing" on whether the prosecution is ready. But the judge said an adjournment is "not unusual and unreasonable for complicated cases like this one" which require a lot of medical documents.
The case is expected to be committed to trial at Hong Kong's High Court.
Jutting, a Cambridge graduate, had worked for Bank of America Merrill Lynch in structured equity finance and trading. In November he was deemed fit to enter a plea based on the results of psychiatric reports but has yet to do so.
The victims had originally come to the Asian financial center to work as migrant domestic helpers but Seneng had let her domestic worker visa lapse and Sumarti had returned to Hong Kong on a tourist visa.