British Columbia's top court will rule next Thursday on the appeal of serial killer Robert Pickton's murder convictions.

Pickton was convicted in 2007 of killing six women who disappeared from Vancouver's Downtown Eastside.

The former Port Coquitlam pig farmer was found guilty of six counts of second-degree murder in the deaths of Sereena Abotsway, Mona Wilson, Andrea Joesbury, Georgina Papin, Marnie Frey and Brenda Wolfe. He was sentenced two days later to life imprisonment with no chance of parole for 25 years.

Pickton's lawyers are appealing the convictions, arguing, among other things, that the judge made mistakes in his instructions to the jury.

That prompted the Crown to launch a cross appeal of the trial judge's decision to split the original 26 murder charges into two separate trials.

Pickton still faces another 20 murder charges relating to missing women, but Crown prosecutors have said they won't proceed on those charges if the original convictions stand because he would already be serving the maximum sentence and is unlikely ever to get out of jail.

Pickton was arrested in February 2002, setting off a massive search of his property in Port Coquitlam, B.C., where investigators found blood samples, bone fragments and victims' belongings.