Second man accused of murder over death of 61-year-old who was tied up and beaten in his own home appears before Leeds Crown Court

A second man accused of murdering a 61-year-old who was tied up and killed in his own home has appeared before Leeds Crown Court.

Alexander Mackay, 46, is accused of the murder of Saleem Butt.

Mr Butt died from head and neck injuries after being "severely beaten" at his home on Hyrstlands Road, Batley.

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The incident is believed to have taken place between April 22 and 23 this year.

Saleem Butt died after being tied up and beaten at his on Hyrstlands Road, Batley.

Mackay, of School Crescent, Dewsbury Moor, appeared before the court via a video link from HMP Leeds for a brief hearing.

No plea to the charge was entered.

The case was adjourned until June 15 when Mackay will appear before the court alongside his co-accused, Craig Stanton, for a plea and trial preparation hearing.

Stanton, 42, of Harold Wilson Court, Huddersfield, is also accused of murder and appeared before the court on May 5.

Crime scene after the death of Saleem Butt

Stanton is also charged with two offences of theft unrelated to the murder charge.

A provisional trial date for both defendants has been fixed for October 26.

Both men will remain in custody until the plea hearing.

A man and a woman who were arrested on suspicion of assisting an offender have been released on bail.

Mr Butt's death has been described as an "horrific sustained attack" by West Yorkshire Police

After the incident, Detective Chief Inspector Tony Nicholson of the Homicide and Major Enquiry Team, who is leading the investigation said: “We are continuing a number of enquiries as we work to hunt down those responsible for this horrific sustained attack on a kind-hearted, well-liked and very well-known man.

“Following a post mortem examination we now believe Mr Butt was probably attacked between Wednesday evening and Thursday (April 22 and 23) and I continue to want to speak to anyone who can help us pinpoint his movements on Wednesday in particular.”

He added: “It is very hard to comprehend why someone would attack Mr Butt, let alone inflict the level of violence he suffered.

“I cannot stress how important it is that we find those responsible for what was an awful offence committed against a man described as lovely and very gentle by those that knew him.

“Persons prepared to commit these acts must be taken off our streets and I urge anyone who has information to come forwards.”

Anyone with information which could assist the investigation should contact West Yorkshire Police.

The charity Crimestoppers can also be contacted anonymously.