Six years after his partner and her daughter vanished, murder-accused Kamal Reddy told police she said they were going to meet a relative and just never came back, a court has heard.
Reddy, 42, is standing trial accused of the killing of his partner, Mubarak Yusuf, and her toddler, Juwairiyah "Jojo" Kalim, in the High Court at Auckland.
The Crown says Reddy unwittingly told undercover police officers he had strangled 24-year-old Ms Yusuf -- also known as Pakeeza Faizal -- with an electric cord and smothered the three-year-old before taking police to their bodies under the Takapuna Landing Bridge in October 2014.
Although police believe the pair were killed in their Howick home in late 2006 or early 2007, they were not reported missing until 2013 by Ms Yusuf's mother, Mubarak Rojina Banu.
Detective David Sanday told the court when Reddy was questioned over the missing pair in 2013, he told police Ms Yusuf had told him she was picking up an aunt he had never heard of from the airport, with plans to go to Wellington.
He never saw them again, he said.
"The brown curtains were closed ... When I saw the pulled curtains I knew she was gone," a statement signed by Reddy said.
It also said Ms Yusuf had told him she had bought plane tickets to Australia and not even Ms Yusuf's mother knew about the aunt she was meeting.
They had been happy together in the week prior to the disappearance, Reddy's statement said.
Police intelligence analyst Helen Little told the court there had been a sudden change in Ms Yusuf's accounts in January 2007, where everything but automatic payments stopped, apart from a series of ATM withdrawals in Auckland.
Meanwhile Reddy's accounts saw a drop in use from March.
After November 2007, Ms Yusuf's benefit payments stopped and her account activity stopped entirely, while Reddy's accounts became more active again.
Earlier in the week, Ms Banu said Reddy had confronted her about reporting the pair missing, saying police were "hassling" him.
Another officer, Senior Constable Amarjeet Kumar, said Mr Reddy had told him Ms Yusuf's family had asked him for $10,000 over an immigration arrangement, but he had turned it down because his work had sorted it for him.
The defence says Reddy was pressured into making a false confession by undercover police officers who had gained his trust over a period of months.
He only knew the location of the bodies because he had suggested the spot to the real killer, lawyer Jonathan Krebs said.
The details of the police sting have been suppressed, but it can be reported the plan involved a "series of simulated criminal scenarios" including officers and the accused.
The trial continues.