Brother faces EastEnders actress murder trial

Gemma McCluskie played Kerry Skinner in the BBC soap in 2001. Photo: Metropolitan Police

The brother of a former EastEnders actress will stand trial later this year, accused of her murder.

Tony McCluskie, 35, appeared at the Old Bailey charged with causing the death of actress Gemma McCluskie, 29.

He was remanded in custody to face trial on November 12. A further hearing will take place in October.

Miss McCluskie's headless and limbless body was discovered floating in the Regent's Canal in Hackney, east London, in March.

She had been missing for a week after attending the £650 million opening of the new Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel, east London

Miss McCluskie was last seen returning to the home in Pelter Street, Hackney, that she shared with her brother.

The actress played Kerry Skinner in the BBC soap in 2001.

Friends launched extensive searches across east London in a bid to find her, and former EastEnders co-stars Natalie Cassidy and Brooke Kinsella both appealed for help on Twitter.