THE man accused of murdering Frank Betteridge has made a brief appearance in court.

Anthony Hart is also accused of fraud, using someone else's bank card and withdrawing £250 one day later.

The 38-year-old, of Hartington Road, central Stockton, has not yet entered pleas to the charges.

Judge Stephen Ashurst remanded the defendant in custody following the short hearing at Teesside Crown Court.

The 62-year-old, from South Bank, died following a reported incident at his home in Stephens Street in South Bank, Middlesbrough, on Friday, December 27.

The Northern Echo:

Floral tributes at the scene

Emergency services were called to the bungalow in Stephens Street at 7.55pm to reports of a fire.

Cleveland Fire Brigade confirmed a small fire was discovered in the house and a man was found dead.

Hart’s trial date has been set for five days on July 6 at Newcastle Crown Court.