Mark Bridger wished a search party "luck" in their hunt for missing schoolgirl April Jones, Mold Crown Court was told today.
Searcher Keiran Gregory told police in a statement that Bridger had talked to his team while they waited for police to check an item of clothing they had found.
– Keiran Gregory, police statement
He had been searching for most of the night and I realised he had a headtorch in his pocket. Before leaving he wished us luck in our search - it wasn't until Sky News announced he had been arrested that I realised he had said some odd things. He had said he had been searching all night and then later said he had not found out until 9.30am the following morning.
The court also a police statement from Paul Jellett, another searcher.
He said Mr Bridger talked to him at around 2pm on October 2nd. "Mark said he had no TV and didn't hear about it until 9.30 this morning."
"He went on saying: "I recognise the girl but I cannot say what her name is.
"He said he had been searching in Ceinws all morning."
"I realised that when we spoke to him his clothing was very clean and didn't add up to him saying he had been searching all morning. "Everywhere was very muddy as it had been pouring with rain all night."