The man accused of murdering a Nelson woman and leaving her body in a car near the Nelson police station still wants to hire Wellington QC Robert Lithgow as his defence counsel.
Michael William Beca, 44, appeared again in the Nelson District Court yesterday.
It has been four months since Beca was arrested and charged with the murder of Lisa Maree Corbett, 37.
In that time, the case has made slow progress through the court system, with Beca refusing to complete a second psychiatric report ordered in April.
He has also expressed unhappiness with the lawyers appointed to him by the court, and said he wanted to be represented by Mr Lithgow instead.
Lawyer Steven Zindel told the court yesterday he was appearing on behalf of Christchurch-based lawyer Anthony Garrett, who said he had been sacked by Beca.
However, Beca told Judge Tom Broadmore he had never hired Mr Garrett, who was assigned to him under legal aid, and he wanted disclosure from the police delivered to him in Christchurch Prison.
Judge Broadmore committed the case to the High Court and said that if the issue of fitness to plead arose, it could still be dealt with in that court.
Beca's case will next be called on July 25 in the High Court. His attendance on that day is excused.
Ms Corbett's body was found in the back of a car parked near the Nelson police station on March 12.
Beca, who is said to have been in an on-off relationship with Ms Corbett, had her five-year-old daughter with him.
She is thought to have been present when her mother was killed.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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