A Pembrokeshire man charged with two double murders as well as other serious offences appeared in court this afternoon to enter pleas of not guilty.

John William Cooper, aged 64, denied murdering sister and brother Helen and Richard Thomas at Scoveston Manor on December 22nd, 1985.

He also denied murdering Gwenda and Peter Dixon, who were found shot dead on the Pembrokeshire coastal path in 1989.

Cooper also entered pleas of not guilty to one charge of rape, one of indecent assault on a 15-year-old girl and five of attempted robbery, all on March 6th, 1996.

Cooper appeared at Swansea crown court via a video link with Long Lartin category A prison in Worcestershire, for a plea and case management hearing before Mr Justice John Griffith Williams, who will judge the trial.

David Elias QC will lead the prosecution and Mark Evans QC the defence team.

Mr Justice Williams set down a timetable for both sides to complete their preparations in, and scheduled the trial for June 7th , 2010.

Both barristers warned Mr Justice Williams that the date might prove "optimistic" because several matters needed to be settled first.

The judge warned that if the June window was missed then, because of the estimated length of eight weeks, the next available trial start date would be in October, 2010.

Cooper, white haired and wearing an open neck, short sleeved blue shirt, spoke only to confirm his identity and to enter his pleas.

Mr Justice Williams will review progress in the case on March 1st, at a hearing at Cardiff crown court.

Cooper, of Spring Gardens, Letterston, was further remanded in custody.