Gemma McCluskie: Brother Tony in court accused of murdering EastEnders actress

The brother of former EastEnders actress Gemma McCluskie is to stand trial accused of her murder in November.

Tony McCluskie, 35, is charged with killing the 29-year-old from Bethnal Green and then dumping her body in a canal just hours after she attended the Royal London Hospital’s opening ceremony on March 1 this year.

Her headless torso was discovered in a stretch of the Regent’s Canal near Broadway Market in Hackney, five days later after a barge owner called the police.

The body was later confirmed to be that of Ms McCluskie, but a postmortem proved inconclusive.

Appearing in custody, McMcluskie spoke only to confirm his identity during a brief hearing at the Old Bailey today (Monday).

He did not enter a plea to the murder charge and his barrister, Jeremy Dein QC, did not make an application for bail.

The alleged killer will return to court on October 12 for a plea and case management hearing, with a trial date pencilled in for November 12.

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Miss McCluskie appeared in more than 30 episodes of the BBC soap opera as Kerry Skinner in 2001.

Former EastEnders co-stars Natalie Cassidy and Brooke Kinsella both appealed on Twitter for help in finding her.

McCluskie, of Pelter Street, Bethnal Green, east London, was remanded in custody.