A businessman accused of murdering his estranged wife told police the question of whether she could be seeing another man "festered" in his mind.
Nat Fraser also told officers he and wife Arlene had a stormy relationship and said their marriage did not get off to a good start, a court has heard.
Fraser further denied causing his wife harm or arranging for anyone else to do so when he spoke to officers the day after she vanished, jurors were told.
Mother-of-two Arlene Fraser, 33, of Smith Street, New Elgin, Moray, went missing on April 28, 1998 and has not been seen since.
Fraser, 53, is on trial at the High Court in Edinburgh where he denies acting with others to murder her.
The trial has been hearing from a former senior policeman who was a family liaison officer during the inquiry into Mrs Fraser's disappearance.
William Robertson, 58, who later retired at the rank of detective inspector, took a statement from Fraser the day after his wife went missing. The process spanned several hours at Elgin police office.
Alex Prentice QC, prosecuting, read parts of the statement to the jury.
The trial heard that Fraser had stated: "Arlene and I had a relatively stormy relationship. The marriage never got off to a good start. We had planned to be married in September 1987. However, Arlene became pregnant and we brought the marriage forward four months.
"About two to three weeks before we were married, Arlene broke a mirror tile over my head after overhearing a phone call I'd received from a female. She thought I was maybe going to meet this girl and she never gave me a chance to explain. That sort of set the tone for our relationship. It was up and down."
The trial heard Fraser also told police in the 47-page statement: "Somebody gave me a whisper, I can't recall who it was, that Arlene was seeing a man who worked in the Landmark furniture store but I do not know his name.
"I did ask her if she was having a carry-on with another man and she just told me no and not to be so stupid. But it just festered in my head and kept gnawing at me. I did ask myself: was it really happening? Was she clever or was I imagining things?
"The problem was I never got a satisfactory answer or conclusion in my own mind that she was not seeing anyone else."
Fraser further told officers he had no idea where his wife could be and rejected claims apparently made by her that he had been following her.
"I have not caused any harm to my wife, relative to her disappearance, and I have not arranged for anyone else to cause her harm," he told police.
Mr Prentice asked the witness whether Fraser asked him how police were getting on with their inquiry, or whether he expressed any desire to know where she might be, and he said "no".
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