Brenton Tarrant has today denied being the Christchurch mosque terror attacker and will stand trial in May next year.

The 28-year-old Australian national entered not guilty pleas during a short appearance at the High Court at Christchurch this morning.

Wearing a grey sweatshirt and straining to hear discussions, he was not in the courtroom but instead appeared via audio visual link from Paremoremo Prison in Auckland.

The courtroom was filled with victims – survivors and family members of the 51 killed during the March 15 attack at two Christchurch mosques – with many more watching from two overflow rooms inside the courthouse via audio visual link.

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They reacted with gasps when the not guilty pleas were entered.

A trial date of May 4 was confirmed by Justice Cameron Mander. Crown believes the trial could last around six weeks. Defence counsel Shane Tait believes it could take up to three months.

The accused was remanded in custody to a case review hearing on August 16 at 9.15am.

Christchurch Crown Solicitor Mark Zarifeh formally laid another murder charge, two additional attempted murder charges, and a charge under the Terrorism Suppression Act 2002.

The accused gunman now faces a total of 51 murder charges and 40 attempted murder charges - along with the terrorism charge.

Justice Cameron Mander said the court had received two health assessors' reports that were ordered at the last court hearing under section 38 of the Mental Health Act to determine whether the defendant was mentally fit or impaired and whether he was mentally able to enter pleas to the charges.

The judge confirmed today: "No issues arise regarding the defendant's fitness to plead, to instruct council and to stand trial. Therefore a fitness hearing is not required."

Suppression also lifted today on the names of the attempted murder victims, the judge confirmed. The Crown confirmed that, after inquiries, they did not seek a continuation of the suppression order.

However, three victims under the age of 18 have statutory suppression.

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Suppression also lifted on the name of the 51st person to die from the attacks – Turkish national Zekeriah Tuyan who passed away at Christchurch Hospital.

Several family members and survivors of the mosque shooting came to court this morning. There was reserved seating for 80 in the public gallery, while others elsewhere in the courthouse dialled in via audio visual link-up.

Before the hearing, Abdul Aziz, widely hailed as a hero for confronting the gunman and chasing him away from Linwood Islamic Centre where seven people were killed, wanted to see the accused in court.

"I just want to see his stupid face," he said. "We are getting there slowly. But it will take time. Days like today bring it all back."

Once again there was a large domestic and international media presence for the alleged gunman's third appearance.

TV cameras and photographers were lined up outside the Christchurch Justice Precinct which houses the High Court courtroom.

Media were ushered inside by security and moved to a briefing room before 22 journalists were taken into the courtroom where the hearing started at 9.15am. There was an overflow of journalists who watched proceedings via audio visual link from another room inside the courthouse.

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The man accused of killing 51 people at two Christchurch mosques has today pleaded not guilty to all charges.

Brenton Tarrant appeared via video link from prison shortly after 9am.

He is charged with murdering 51 worshippers and the attempted murder of 41others at two mosques in Christchurch on March 15.

One man, widely hailed as a hero for confronting the alleged gunman and chasing him away from Linwood Islamic Centre where seven people were killed, said he wanted to see the accused in court today.

"We are getting there slowly. But it will take time. Days like today bring it all back."

Once again there has been a large domestic and international media presence for the alleged gunman's third appearance.

TV cameras and photographers have been lined up outside the Christchurch Justice Precinct, which houses the High Court.

Media were ushered inside by security and moved to a briefing room before 22 journalists will be taken into the courtroom where the hearing started at 9.15am.

There is an overflow of journalists who watched proceedings via audio visual link from another room inside the courthouse.

Several family members and survivors of the mosque shooting have also came to court this morning. There has been reserved seating for 80 in the public gallery, while others elsewhere in the courthouse were dialling in via audio visual link-up.

As well as entering pleas today, the gunman was expected to face more charges.

Four cultural advisers, including two who are legally trained, are at court today to help explain to the victims – who speak 10-15 languages between them all – what happens in court today.

There has been a heavy security presence, with armed police outside court and security and police inside the building.

The court was also likely to hear the results of psychiatric reports around his fitness to enter a plea.

Last Thursday a previous suppression order banning publication of his face was lifted.
The order had been made at a previous appearance on March 16.

The Herald reported earlier this month that the Crown was likely to formalise the laying of another murder charge, two additional attempted murder charges, and a charge under the Terrorism Suppression Act 2002.

That will mean the accused gunman will face a total of 51 murder charges and 41 attempted murder charges - along with the terrorism charge.

He is being represented by his Auckland-based defence lawyers Shane Tait and Jonathan Hudson.

Applications from media to film or take photography for the hearing have previously been declined.

At the defendant's second court hearing in the High Court at Christchurch on April 5, mental health reports were ordered to explore whether he is mentally fit to enter pleas to the charges.

His defence team asked for mental health experts to assess the accused under section 38 of the Mental Health Act.

Justice Cameron Mander ordered two health assessors' reports and stressed that the move was "normal procedure" and an "entirely ordinary and regular step" to be taken at this stage of the judicial process.

Nothing should be read into the ordering of the reports, he added.

Around 50 family members and survivors of the Al Noor Masjid and Linwood Islamic Centre came to court last time to witness proceedings.

Fifty-one people died after the dual attacks on the Christchurch mosques.