Grace Millane: Murder-accused pleads not guilty

The man accused of murdering British backpacker Grace Millane has pleaded not guilty.  

The 27-year-old has name suppression and appeared at the Auckland High Court on Wednesday in his second court appearance since Ms Millane's death.

Ms Millane, 22, arrived in New Zealand in late November in the second leg of a year spent backpacking around the world. She went missing on December 2, and her body was found a week later in a bush area of west Auckland.

The accused has been remanded in custody and a trial date has been set for November 4. 

The British backpacker was last seen on CCTV on Saturday, December 1, entering CityLife Hotel in Auckland with the 27-year-old accused of her murder.

The accused was arrested and charged over Ms Millane's death on December 8 last year and appeared at the Auckland District Court on December 10, where he was granted interim name suppression after his lawyer Ian Brookie signalled an appeal.

At least one overseas media outlet published the 27-year-old's name after his first court appearance, and while the name was later removed from the New Zealand version online article, it spread via social media.

It prompted Justice Minister Andrew Little to speak out, saying the accused's defence team "will be looking for every opportunity" to say their client's fair trial rights have been compromised.