Three Royal Marines pleaded not guilty today to the murder of a unknown Afghan while on active service.
The men, known only as Marines A, B and C, entered their pleas in rank order from behind a screen amid tight security at the Military Court Centre in Bulford, Wiltshire.
The men denied the allegation under Section 42 of the Armed Forces Act 2006 that on or about September 15 2011 they murdered the captured person while on patrol in Afghanistan.
David Perry QC, prosecuting, said the core of the prosecution case would be video footage.
Judge Advocate General Jeff Blackett set a two-day pre-trial review hearing to start on August 5 with a trial due to last three to four weeks to commence on October 21.
All three marines were granted bail. Two further marines have been told that the murder charges against them have been dropped.
An urgent investigation is underway after it was revealed that tissue samples from soldiers killed in Afghanistan have been kept by the Ministry of Defence.
The remains, which have been held without permission from families, were discovered last month at Bulford camp in Wiltshire. A number of body parts were also found at the John Radcliffe hospital in Oxford.
Tonight the Army said they're "deeply sorry" and that investigations are being carried out to identify families affected
Speaking to BBC News, Major General James Everard, Assistant Chief of the General Staff, said:
The body parts and tissue of soldiers killed in Afghanistan have been kept by the Ministry of Defence without the permission of their families.
Officials have admitted that six body parts and more than 50 tissue samples were retained by the Royal Military Police.
They were discovered last month when a new manager was appointed at the Military Police's Special Investigations Branch (SIB).
An urgent investigation has been launched and the MOD are trying to identify and inform the families affected.