A Liverpool pensioner allegedly left his brother's corpse in a house they shared for two years while claiming thousands of pounds of the dead man's benefits.
Donald Pollard was arrested on 15 June last year after his brother Stephen was found dead at the terraced home on Madelaine Street, Toxteth.
The 69-year-old appeared at Liverpool Magistrates' Court on Thursday (1 March) where he was charged with preventing a lawful and decent burial and two counts of fraud.
The charge sheet stated that Pollard prevented the burial of his brother between 1 January 2015, and the date the body was found in 2017, reported the Liverpool Echo.
It is also alleged that Pollard fraudulently claimed £20,642 ($28,363.97) in Disability Living Allowance and a further £2,478 in income support on behalf of Stephen from 6 January 2015.
The death was initially treated as unexplained and Keith Webster, defending Donald, said there was no suggestion that Donald played a part in his brother's death.
"I am aware there will be a high public interest in the case and I feel it is only right to say there is no suggestion of any criminality surrounding the cause of death," said Webster, according to the Echo.
The defendant is bailed to an address in Green Lane, Tuebrook, Merseyside, and was not asked to enter pleas to the charges, which may be given at his next appearance in Liverpool Crown Court.
Stephen's body was recovered from the house by emergency services after Merseyside Police were called to the address due to concerns for the dead man's welfare.
The Echo reported that they spoke to neighbours of the brothers who said they had lived together at the address for a number of years.
Pollard was released on unconditional bail and ordered to appear at Liverpool Crown Court, where he is due to appear on Thursday (29 March).