The trial of a 40-year-old man accused of murdering a woman in Wicklow two years ago has heard he broke down and confessed to the killing when confronted by his wife.

Roy Webster from Ahsbree, Ashford, Co Wicklow, has pleaded not guilty to the murder but guilty to the manslaughter of Anne Shortall in April 2015.

Mr Webster was helping gardaí with their inquiries into the disappearance of Ms Shortall in April 2015.

He had already told gardaí that the couple had a sexual encounter months previously and that he saw her the day she went missing.

But on 7 April his wife was present when he was questioned by gardaí and she told her husband to speak up if he had something to say. She asked him did you hit her, did you hurt her.

Mr Webster began to cry and said he had. He then described to gardaí how he had beaten Ms Shortall with a hammer and hidden her body in a workshop. 

The court was told his wife fell to her knees while holding their newborn baby after hearing her husband's confession.

Mr Webster then took gardaí to where the body was hidden and he was arrested.

Mr Webster admits responsibility for Ms Shortall's death but denies the charge of murder.

The trial is taking place before Justice Patrick McCarthy at the Central Criminal Court.