Sokol Zefaj, 39, who came to the UK as an asylum seeker in 2000, told the High Court in Glasgow he met Miss Spence in the city.
Mr Zefaj was giving evidence at the trial of Colin Coats and Philip Wade, both 42, who deny abducting, torturing and murdering Lynda Spence in West Kilbride, in April 2011.
He told Lesley Thom-son QC, prosecuting, he had a sexual relation-ship with Miss Spence for about a year. He denied marrying her.
The jury was shown an email from Miss Spence's account on April 26, 2011, which said: "I'm in the **** because of the money you stole out of the flat. It was not my money."
Mr Zefaj said he remembered the email.
He also told the court he last saw Miss Spence in October 2010 in a Glas-gow restaurant. Miss Thomson asked him: "Is Lynda Spence in Alban-ia?" He replied: "To the best of my knowledge the answer is definitely no."
Mr Zefaj said that he got a call from a man calling himself Colin Coats and agreed to meet him on April 26, 2011. He said they had a brief conversation in which the man said he was looking for Miss Spence. When asked if he could identify the man in court, Mr Zefaj said he couldn't.
Under questioning by Gary Allan QC, defending Wade, Mr Zefaj admitted coming to Scotland almost penniless and ending up owning three flats worth a total of £420,000.
He denied knowing of moves under the proceeds of crime act to recover money from him which was allegedly obtained by criminal activity.
The trial continues.