Hartlepool Niramax boss Neil Elliott appears before a judge accused of Michael Phillips' murder
A prominent businessman accused of murder made his first appearance before a judge.
Neil Elliott, a director of waste management company Niramax in Hartlepool, is alleged to have been involved in the killing of 39-year-old Michael Phillips in the town's Rydal Street on June 10.
Prosecutor Jolyon Perks told Teesside Crown Court the police inquiry was still in its infancy, and a number of other people may also be charged.
No charges were put to Elliott, 44, of Briarfield Close, Hartlepool during the short preliminary hearing.
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Judge Simon Bourne-Arton adjourned the case until July 12.
The judge remanded Elliott in custody.