A New Zealander accused of killing a friend in Brisbane has made his first appearance in court.
James Thomas Howell, 35, is charged with killing 26-year-old chef Peter Milos. He sat with his back to the public gallery in court today, at times sinking his head into his hands.
The two had been friends since late 2013 and lived in the same east Brisbane suburb, but their relationship took a tragic turn on May 4 when Howell visited Milos' Morningside home.
Howell has been accused of violently murdering Milos with a number of weapons.
Milos's battered body was found two days later.
Howell was arrested on Wednesday.
Detective Acting Superintendent Damien Hansen said the two had been in regular contact in the days before Milos' death.
Howell did not apply for bail in the Brisbane Magistrates Court and the matter was adjourned until July 21.
Milos was the former co-owner with his brother of the upmarket Mariosarti restaurant.
Howell was one of the people interviewed early in the investigation, however he only became a suspect in the last week.
Following the young chef's death, details of Milos's past and his family's criminal history were aired in the media, leading to speculation that his death may have been an underworld killing.
However, Hansen said Howell had no links to organised crime.
He said the Milos family were "very appreciative" of the work done by police.
"While it does provide some closure to them, they're aware there's a long process to go through the courts now," he said.
- Brisbane Times/AAP