An Auckland man accused of killing a woman and her daughter told family the woman had married a taxi driver and left the country, a court has been told.
Kamal Reddy, 41, is on trial facing murder charges in the High Court in Auckland over the deaths of Pakeeza Yusuf and her three-year-old daughter, Juwairiyah Kalim.
The pair went missing in late 2006 but their bodies were only discovered under a bridge on the North Shore in 2014.
Ms Yusuf's mother Rojina Banu said the last time she spoke to her daughter was over the phone in 2006. Ms Yusuf spoke about her relationship troubles with Mr Reddy, such as his drinking and beatings, she said.
Ms Banu said she bumped into Mr Reddy in a vegetable shop in 2007 and he told her Ms Yusuf was no longer with him. Mr Reddy then turned up at her house and for a few months she fed him and his son, and during that time he gave updates about her daughter being in Niue or in Australia.
In his opening address, Mr Reddy's lawyer Jonathan Krebs told a jury his client falsely confessed to an undercover police officer.
Mr Krebs said people did make false confessions and his client was one of them.
He said the 41-year-old had been groomed by an undercover police officer from April to October 2014, and while he did give information about where their bodies could be buried, someone else had committed the murders.
The trial has been scheduled to run for four weeks.