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Nick Fontanelli, charged in death of LaSalle mother, in court for preliminary hearing

Click to play video: 'EXTENDED INTERVIEW: Vanessa Higgins on her daughter' EXTENDED INTERVIEW: Vanessa Higgins on her daughter
WATCH ABOVE: Vanessa Higgins remembers her daughter, Samantha, who was murdered and dismembered in 2015 – Jan 19, 2016

Nick Fontanelli, charged in the death of his fiancée Samantha Higgins, is appearing in court Monday for his preliminary hearing.

The 24-year-old is charged with first-degree murder and committing an indignity to a body.

WATCH: Nick Fontanelli, charged in the death of his fiancée Samantha Higgins, appeared in court Monday for his preliminary hearing. Global’s Tim Sargeant reports.
Click to play video: 'Nick Fontanelli in court for preliminary hearing' Nick Fontanelli in court for preliminary hearing
Nick Fontanelli in court for preliminary hearing – Feb 20, 2017

READ MORE: Mother of Samantha Higgins desperate for justice

A publication ban has been put in place on all testimony, including that of Higgins’ mother, who testified Monday morning.

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WATCH BELOW: Remembering Samantha Higgins

The young, 22-year-old mother of two was last seen walking home from a friend’s house in LaSalle on July 7, 2015.

READ MORE: Fiancé charged with first-degree murder of Samantha Higgins

Her dismembered body was found three days later in a bag under a bridge in Hinchinbrooke, roughly 75 kilometres south-west of Montreal.

A painting of Samantha Higgins hangs on the wall in her mother's home. Thursday, June 16, 2016. Kelly Greig/Gloabl News
Candles left behind after a vigil for Samantha Higgins, 22, who was found murdered on Friday, July 10, 2015. Martin Hazel/Global News
Samantha Higgins, 22, was reported missing July 7, 2015. Her body was found in a river Hinchinbrooke on Thursday, July 9, 2015. FindingSamantha.com
A mural on the bridge where Samantha Higgins was found, Tuesday, January 19, 2016. Vanessa Higgins
A family photo of Nick Fontanelli with Samantha Higgins, who was found dead in Hinchinbrooke, Que. Facebook

The preliminary hearing is expected to last until Feb. 28.

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