Michael Adebowale, the man accused of murdering Drummer Lee Rigby, appeared in court for the first time today restrained in handcuffs and walking with a pronounced limp.
The defendant was cuffed at the wrists, and sat in the dock behind bullet proof glass between two plain clothes police officers.
The 22 year-old was quiet and even nodded in acknowledgement of the judge’s comments at the end of the five minute hearing.
Appearing at Westminster magistrates’ court in central London he spoke only to confirm his name and address, replying calmly with just the word: “Yes.”
As he walked to and from the jailer’s door into the dock, the defendant appeared to be holding up his white cotton trousers with his cuffed hands in his crotch.
His right hand was clearly bandaged. The defendant is believed to have lost several fingers during the incident in Woolwich, south east London, last week and was also shot by police from an armed response vehicle.
Howard Riddle, the chief magistrate, told him: “There’s no need to stand, Mr Adebowale. I understand you have been injured.”
Adebowale appeared under high levels of security, including a police helicopter hovering over the court in Marylebone Road.
Dressed in a light grey sweatshirt, Adebowale was asked if he understood that he was charged with the murder of Drummer Lee Rigby and of possessing a 9.4mm KNIL Model 91 revolver “to cause persons to believe that unlawful violence would be used”.
Bethan David, prosecuting, said: “I understand a date has been set at the Old Bailey for June 28.”
Another hearing to bring the case under the terrorism protocol, which governs how terrorism prosecutions are heard in court, is due on Monday, she added,
Howard Riddle, the district judge, said: “The charges have been read to you. These pleas will be sent to the Central Criminal Court sitting at the Old Bailey.
“This court cannot grant bail.
“There will be a hearing on Monday June 3 when there will be application under the terrorism protocol as far as this case is concerned.
“The plea and case management hearing is set for June 28.”
Adebowale nodded in acknowledgement of the district judge’s comments.
Drummer Rigby was murdered near Woolwich barracks on Wednesday last week. A post mortem examination found the soldier’s cause of death was “multiple incised wounds”. An inquest will be opened tomorrow.