One of the men accused of murdering Drummer Lee Rigby today refused to stand in a court dock and blew kisses to a friend in the public gallery.
Michael Adebolajo, 28, held a copy of the Koran in his right hand and asked to be charged under the name of Mujaahid Abu Hamsa.
He appeared with his left arm bandaged and refused to stand when deputy chief magistrate Emma Arbuthnott entered Westminster magistrates’ court for the short hearing.
When charged with the murder of Drummer Rigby and attempting to murder two police officers known only as E48 and D49 — and possessing a firearm — he asked for the right to speak.
He confirmed that he wanted to be charged under the name Abu Hamsa, his date of birth and that he was of no fixed address. Adebolajo was brought to court days after being released from hospital where he was treated for nine days.
He had been shot by police called to the scene where Drummer Rigby had been hacked to death near Woolwich Barracks on May 22.
When the charges were read he was asked if he understood them and asked: “May I respond?” As his barrister David Gottlieb tried to intervene, Adebolajo continued to speak and the Deputy Judge told him that this was “just formal procedure and you don’t need to reply at this stage”.
The District Judge told him that he needed to be informed of the charges against him and Adebolajo responded: “You are correct and I don’t disagree with you.”
Adebolajo, wearing a white T-shirt, was formally committed for trial at the Old Bailey and will stand in the same dock as Michael Adebowale on June 28.
The District Judge told him that there would be a further hearing at the Old Bailey within 48 hours.
Adebolajo was remanded in custody.