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Men accused of killing Lee Rigby in Woolwich plead 'not guilty'

Michael Adebowale and Michael Adebolajo appeared in court, by videolink, today.

The coffin of murdered Fusilier Lee Rigby is carried from Bury Parish church in Greater Manchester, following his funeral service in July.
The coffin of murdered Fusilier Lee Rigby is carried from Bury Parish church in Greater Manchester, following his funeral service in July.
Image: John Giles/PA Wire

THE TWO MEN accused of killing British soldier Lee Rigby in broad daylight last May have pleaded ‘not guilty’ to the murder.

Michael Adebowale (22) and Michael Adebolajo (28) appeared in court via video link today. They also pleaded not guilty to another charge relating to the alleged attempted murder of a police officer on the same day.

On 22 May this year, Rigby was hit by a car, assaulted and decapitated in the Woolwich area of London with a machete. One of the attackers was caught on camera, covered in blood, and wielding the knife.

According to reports, the young solider’s wife, Rebecca Rigby, broke down in tears during today’s hearing. The video was broadcast to a packed courtroom at the Old Bailey in London.

Sky News reports that Adebolajo, from Romford in Essex, has asked to be known as Mujaahid Abu Hamza in court, while Adebowale, from Greenwich, southeast London, has asked to be called Ismail Ibn Abdullah.

The accused will remain in custody until they face trial on 19 November.

Additional reporting by AFP

Read: EDL leader arrested after breaking police ban on Woolwich march

More: Woolwich accused disrupts court hearings, shouting: ‘I’m a soldier’

Related: Murder of London soldier raises fears of ‘lone wolf’ attacks

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