Mark Bridger
Mark Bridger to stand trial for murder of April Jones (Reuters)

The murder trial for five-year-old April Jones is due to begin today in Mold Crown Court.

Mark Bridger, 47, will appear in court charged with April's murder after she went missing from her home in Machynlleth, mid-Wales last October.

Bridger is accused of murder, abduction and perverting the course of justice. The later refers to unlawful disposal and concealment of a body.

He denies all the charges, but last month conceded that he is probably to blame for April's death.

At a plea and management hearing, Mr Justice Griffith-Williams said: "The defendant's case is that he was probably responsible for the death of April," but did not add any further details.

April Jones
April Jones went missing from her home in north Wales last October (Reuters)

Brendan Kelly, Bridger's lawyer, had asked that the trial take place away from mid-Wales because "ill feeling" would run high.

However, the judge said Bridger would be tried in Mold, Flintshire, because it was the easiest court for April's parents, Coral and Paul Jones, to attend.

Bridger was arrested and charged with April's murder a week after she went missing on 1 October. The trial is expected to last for four weeks.

April was last seen playing on her bike near her home on the Bryn-y-Gog estate in Machynlleth.

Police and rescue services are still searching for her body. In December, Dyfed Powys Police said it has become one of the biggest search operations in UK history.

Dyfed Powys
Dyfed Powys police are still searching for April's body almost five months on (Reuters)