The statement came during a court hearing on a motion by US media to weaken a gag order on the case against James Holmes.

His lawyers argued that they need more time and information from prosecutors to fully assess Mr Holmes' condition.

The 24-year-old former PhD student was present at the hearing and looked dazed, as in previous appearances.

"We cannot begin to assess the nature and the depth of Mr Holmes' mental illness until we receive full disclosure," defence lawyer Daniel King said.

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