Quadruple murder suspect Anxiang Du could stand trial for murder in August, Northampton Crown Court heard this morning.
Du appeared before the court shortly after 10.30am.
During the short hearing, he spoke only to confirm his name and listened to his Mandarin interpreter throughout.
He appeared in court flanked by five prison officers, dressed in a dark blue jumper.
A provisional trial date was set for August 5, with it expected to last for 10 days at Northampton Crown Court.
Du, listening via his interpreter, was told he faces four counts of murder, described by prosecutors as “charges of the uppermost gravity”.
The court was told the prosecution’s papers were now at a “far more advanced stage” than they would usually be, given the time Du had been out of the country.
He was extradited back to the UK from Morocco on Wednesday afternoon.
As a result, the Crown Prosecution Service asked for a “slightly shorter adjournment than usual”.
Judge Rupert Mayo then told Du’s defence team today would be the last day he would get full credit for an early plea.
After leaving court, the Coventry-based businessman then held discussions with his solicitors in the cells. They had earlier told the court they had no instructions from Du.
However, no pleas were entered and there was no indication of how Du would be pleading.
Du has been charged with the quadruple murder of the Ding family in 2011.
University lecturer Jifeng “Jeff” Ding, his wife Ge “Helen” Chui and their two daughters Alice, 12, and Xing, 18 were all found stabbed to death at their home Pioneer Close, Simpson Manor, on April 29, 2011 - the day of the Royal Wedding.
The short hearing followed yesterday’s appearance at Northampton Magistrates’ Court after he was extradited from Morocco earlier this week.
Du was found sleeping rough on a construction site in the Beni Makada suburb of Tangiers, in Morroco, sheltering on the floor of a draughty room in a partly-built block of flats.
He was formally arrested by UK police yesterday evening after he arrived at Heathrow Airport on a commercial flight from Casablanca at 3.50pm.
The detectives who led the investigation into the murders were again in court today.
Du was remanded back into custody and no bail application was made.
He is currently being held at HMP Woodhill, in Milton Keynes, and will next appear in court on May 7.