Sian murder accused remanded in custody

A taxi driver charged with the murder of Sian O'Callaghan was remanded in custody today.

Christopher Halliwell, 47, appeared at Bristol Crown Court accused of murdering 22-year-old PA Sian, from Swindon, after she went missing from the town's Suju nightclub on March 19.



Halliwell had arrived at the court building in a motorcade that included several police motorcycle outriders, but there was no repeat of the angry protests which took place when he appeared in front of magistrates in Swindon on Monday.



He will next appear at Bristol Crown Court on April 8 via videolink from Bristol's Horfield Prison, where he is being held on remand, after no application for bail was made.



Mr Justice Burnett, at the hearing today, said: "I'm quite satisfied that bail is inappropriate given the nature and circumstances of the alleged offences."



At the hearing in Court One Halliwell, dressed in a dark suit, white shirt and sky blue tie and flanked by four security guards, spoke only to confirm his identity.



His barrister, Daren Samat, said no application for bail would be made.



Mr Justice Burnett ordered that Halliwell be remanded in custody until April 8.



Sian's body was found close to the Uffington White Horse in Oxfordshire on Thursday last week. Following her disappearance after a night out with girlfriends hundreds of people helped search Savernake Forest near Marlborough, where her mobile telephone had been traced to.



Her father Mick paid an emotional tribute to his "bubbly, friendly, caring and loving" daughter on Monday, after Halliwell had appeared before Swindon magistrates.



A 100-strong crowd hurled abuse and attacked the police van taking him to and from the court building. He was also abused from the public gallery as he was led away after the brief hearing.



Wiltshire Police are also continuing to examine the remains of a woman, thought to have been aged between 23 and 30, who is believed to have died between 2003 and 2005. As yet they have not been able to identify the bones found in a field near the village of Eastleach, in the Gloucestershire Cotswolds.



Sian was last seen alive in CCTV footage filmed close to Suju in the early hours of March 19. She lived in a flat just half a mile away with her boyfriend Kevin Reape, 25.



She had sent a text message to her partner on the night of her disappearance, saying: "Where are you? x."



Her body was recovered from an area near Uffington, 15 miles east of Swindon.



Halliwell was arrested on Thursday at a taxi rank at an Asda supermarket in Swindon.



Police continue to ask for information from anyone poaching around the village of Ramsbury, near Marlborough, on the night of March 18/19 who might have seen a green Toyota Avensis in the area in connection with the investigation.

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