British banker Rurik Jutting pleads not guilty to Hong Kong murders

Eddie Lee

A British former banker pleaded not guilty to two counts of murder as his trial opened with the judge warning that the jury would see "unpleasant photographs" during the trial.

Rurik Jutting, 30, is charged with two counts of murder for the deaths of two Indonesian women, Sumarti Ningsih, 25, and Seneng Mujiasih, 29.

Both were found dead inside his flat at J Residence on Johnston Road, in Wan Chai.

Jutting, who had been in custody since November 1, 2014 – the day the two corpses were found – appeared in the High Court on Monday morning.

British banker Rurik Jutting accused of the murders of two Indonesian women, sits in a prison van as he arrives at the eastern court in Hong Kong on May 8, 2015.
Anthony Wallace | AFP | Getty Images

Though he denied two counts of murder, the former banker pleaded guilty to manslaughter.

The accused, who had noticeably lost weight since his arrest, was represented by barristers, including Clive Grossman SC and Tim Owen.

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The trial is scheduled to be held for 15 days until November 11. Five men and four women in a nine-member jury will decide whether the Briton is guilty of murder.

When selecting the jury, Mr Justice Michael Stuart-Moore said that jurors would be shown certain "unpleasant photographs" as evidence.

He also told the jury it would hear evidence related to Jutting's psychiatric and psychological conditions.

An editor and a housewife claimed their English was not good enough, and they were subsequently excused.

A few said they did not watch "bloody" action or horror movies. They were also excused.

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