The man accused of raping and murdering Dundee mum Mary McLaren will stand trial early next month.
Patrick James Rae (41), a prisoner at Perth, appeared from custody at the high court in Edinburgh at a preliminary hearing.
Rae denies murdering and raping Mrs McLaren between February 25 and March 10, 2010. At the hearing defence advocate Mark Stewart QC lodged an updated witness list and a list of productions.
Mr Stewart also outlined a number of outstanding issues that he moved could be dealt with on the trial date of Tuesday, May 3.
There was no objection from advocate depute David Young QC, who also noted a number of procedural issues still to be resolved on the same date.
Lord Tyre, who intimated he would preside over the trial, continued the case to the trial diet, for which six weeks have been set aside.
Rae denies that at North Marketgait and elsewhere in Dundee he assaulted Mrs McLaren, of Rowantree Crescent, by seizing hold of her, forcibly removing her clothing, raping her, repeatedly punching her on the head, repeatedly striking her head and body on the ground and against a wall, or otherwise inflicting violence on her, repeatedly striking her on the neck with a knife or similar instrument, placing a piece of fabric or similar over her throat, seizing her by the throat, compressing, restricting her breathing and murdering her.
He also denies that between February 25 and March 15, 2010, at North Marketgait, Dundee, Brechin Road in Arbroath and elsewhere unknown, he concealed the body of Mary McLaren under leaf litter and plant foliage at North Marketgait and, at the same location and elsewhere, removed and disposed of a coat, bagging contents belonging to Mary McLaren.
It is also alleged that at the same location and elsewhere, he disposed of a knife or similar instrument, disposing of and washing clothes at Brechin Road, Arbroath, and elsewhere, doing so to avoid arrest, detection and prosecution and thus attempted to defeat the ends of justice.