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Christchurch terrorism: Tarrant pleads not guilty

Christchurch terrorism: Tarrant pleads not guilty
New Zealand court sets trial for May 2019 as suspect faces 51 murder charges, besides 40 attempted murder charges

By Riyaz ul Khaliq

ANKARA (AA) - The terrorist accused of massacring 51 innocent Muslims in New Zealand in March pleaded Friday not guilty to all charges brought against him, local media reported.

Brenton Tarrant, 28, pleaded not guilty during his short appearance via audio visual link at the High Court at Christchurch early this morning, said the New Zealand Herald newspaper.

Tarrant, who is an Australian national, denied that he launched the suspected white supremacist terror attacks on the two Christchurch mosques where Muslims were offering Friday prayers on March 15.

The suspect faces 51 murder charges, besides 40 attempted murder charges - along with that of the terrorism act.

“[Tarrant] will stand trial in May [4] next year,” the newspaper said.

He is detained in the Paremoremo Prison in Auckland.

The newspaper said that Friday’s court hearing witnessed victims -- survivors and family members of the 51 killed during the attack at two mosques -- with many more watching from two overflow rooms inside the courthouse via audio visual link.

“They reacted with gasps when the not guilty pleas were entered,” the report added.

source: News Feed
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