UK & World News
Leicester Fire Deaths: Teenager In Court
A teenager has been remanded in custody over the deaths of a mother and her three teenage children who died in a house fire.
Kemo Anthony Porter, 18, spoke only to confirm his name, address and date of birth at the two-minute hearing at Leicester Magistrates' Court.
Porter, who was not required to enter a plea at the hearing, will appear before Leicester Crown Court on Monday via videolink and then again on October 4.
The teenager, of Browning Street, Leicester, is charged with four counts of murder over the deaths of Shehnila Taufiq, 47, her daughter Zainab, 19, and sons Bilal, 17, and Jamil, 15.
Their bodies were discovered in the upstairs bedrooms of their home on Wood Hill in the Spinney Hills area of the city on Friday, September 13.
His court appearance came as an inquest into the deaths was opened and adjourned, with the cause of death given as smoke inhalation.
Temporary Detective Superintendent Kate Meynell, senior investigating officer at Leicestershire Police, told the hearing the four family members had been formally identified by a dental examination.
The inquest also heard Mrs Taufiq was a mature student living in Leicester with her children, who were also studying in the city.
Adjourning the inquest to a date to be set, coroner Catherine Mason said: "The family would like to have their loved ones back so that they can rightly and respectfully lay them to rest.
"However in the circumstances it is not possible, but as in all losses I will work very hard to ensure that there is the lawful release at the earliest opportunity so that funeral arrangements can continue."
No members of the Taufiq family were at the hearing.
The children's father, Muhammad Taufiq al Sattar, a neurosurgeon who was working in Ireland, has spoken of his grief and said he would "deeply miss" his "beautiful" wife, daughter and two teenage sons.
The Taufiq family, originally from Pakistan, had a home in Ireland for at least 15 years before the children moved to the UK with their mother about five years ago for an Islamic education.
Police are still investigating whether there is a possible link with the fatal house fire and that of the murder of a 20-year-old man seven hours earlier less than a mile away.
Antoin Akpom was found injured on Kent Street on September 12 at 5.30pm after being stabbed. He later died in hospital.
But Assistant Chief Constable Roger Bannister, of Leicestershire Police, said on Thursday that there was no suspicion of a racially motivated element to either the house fire or Mr Akpom's death.
Separately, Abdul Hakim, 19, of Wood Hill, Leicester, appeared in court on Wednesday, charged with 20-year-old Mr Akpom's murder.