MONTREAL -- A man charged with two counts of first-degree murder -- both carried out with an axe, according to the prosecution -- made a brief appearance at the Montreal courthouse Thursday.

Claude Charbonneau, 61, appeared via teleconference for allegedly killing NDG landlord Theodoros Lakis Debeyiotis in his home on Aug. 4.

Investigators visited another building owned by the victim's family two days later. While searching that building, on Henri Bourassa Blvd. in Ahuntsic-Cartiervile, they found Pierre Phaneuf, 68, the building's janitor.

Charbonneau was Debeyiotis's neighbour and is charged with killing both men.

Police launched a province-wide search and Charbonneau was spotted and arrested in Trois-Rivieres on Tuesday.

During his court appearance, Charbonneau refused to retain the services of a lawyer. He told the judge that he committed the killings and that he expected to get two consecutive life sentences, adding a comment that he "knows how the system works."

Justice Genevieve Graton insisted that Charbonneau get a lawyer, and one who was in the courtroom volunteered his services.

Charbonneau declined.

Graton told him she couldn't accept his guilty plea because it is not her jurisdiction, as murder cases can only be tried in front of the Quebec Superior Court at a later date.

Charbonneau was sent back to jail and will return to court Oct. 1 for the next steps in his trial.