The identity of the man accused of murdering a Bay of Plenty woman can now be revealed.

Hosea Gerard Collier , 27, appeared in the High Court at Tauranga today via audio-visual link to face a charge of murder.

Opotiki woman Robyn Alicia Crawford was killed on February 19.

Her body was found at a residential property near the Opotiki CBD.

Members of Crawford's family were present in the courtroom today, packing out the public gallery.


Defence counsel Gene Tomlinson explained to Justice Sarah Katz that his client was unable to formally enter a plea.

However, because it was the last day that a plea could be entered, Tomlinson entered a not guilty plea on his client's behalf.

Tomlison said he had requested an expert psychiatric assessment of Collier to ascertain the defendant's fitness to plead and stand trial. Tomlison did not seek further name suppression.

Katz lifted suppression from both the murder accused and the victim.

The case was set for a case review hearing on May 23, with a trial expected to start on March 4, 2019.

Collier was remanded in care until then.