The case against Hartlepool funeral director Gerald Martin, who is charged with a string of alleged sex offences on young boys, was the subject of a court hearing yesterday.
Martin, 65, is due to stand trial on nine charges of indecent and attempted indecent assault, allegedly committed decades ago.
The case progression hearing was held at Teesside Crown Court.
Martin, of Mason and Gerald Martin Funeral Directors, in Park Road, denies all charges.
The trial was due to take place in January of this year but developments prevented it from going ahead.
Martin faces nine allegations in total – including several charges of attempted serious sexual assaults and also of indecent assault.
They are alleged to have been committed against two boys.
Martin denied all of the allegations, which date back decades, when he made his first appearance at Hartlepool Magistrates’ Court in July last year.
Martin, of Valley Close, Hartlepool, was not required to attend yesterday’s hearing. The Recorder of Middlesbrough, Judge Simon Bourne Arton, said a trial could take place in March or April of next year.
The judge renewed his bail in his absence.