CLAIMS that a Burnley woman was in a depressed and suicidal trance when she shot her husband's mistress dead in a beauty salon were dismissed by a psychiatrist giving evidence as part of an Old Bailey murder trial.

Prosecution consultant psychiatrist Dr Philip Joseph dismissed defence claims that Rena Salmon, 43, did not know what she was doing when she killed Lorna Stewart.

He also dismissed suggestions that Salmon, who was born in Birmingham and grew up in Burnley, was in a trance-like state when she shot Miss Stewart twice with a shotgun at her beauty salon in Chiswick, west London, last September.

Salmon, who now lives in Great Shefford, Berks, denies murder. She told the court she felt suicidal after discovering that her husband Paul was having an affair with Miss Stewart.

She claimed to have gone to the salon in order to commit suicide there.

Dr Joseph accepted that Salmon was very distressed when she discovered the affair and that "her world caved in". But he dismissed claims she carried out the alleged offence because of her depression.

Dr Joseph said: "The witness statements point to anger. She was extremely angry. Her anger is completely independent of any severe depressive illness. My opinion was that she was not suffering from an abnormality of mind at the time of the shooting."

Dr Joseph said a police doctor who saw Salmon after the shooting had not detected any symptoms of severe depression, and community psychiatric nurse Christopher Chapman, who saw her throughout the first six months of last year, concluded: "She appears well."

Mr Chapman wrote in June: "She says she no longer has any feelings for her husband. She cannot believe it is the same person, the way he is acting now."

Dr Joseph highlighted that Salmon had also gone on a spending spree to New York, which was inconsistent with someone being severely depressed also later to Florida with her children just before the shooting.

The psychiatrist said he believed Salmon had been reacting throughout to her husband and the situation.