News Criminal Defence 16th Oct 2023

Fiona Robertson’s client acquitted of rape

Fiona Robertson represented a defendant accused of rape and assault by penetration.

The defendant and complainant had been close friends until the complainant accused the defendant of driving her to a dark industrial estate where he drugged and raped her in the back of his taxi. The defendant accepted he had parked in the industrial estate, given the complainant wine and the parties had sexual relations but maintained the acts had been consensual.

The jury had copies of text messages between the parties following the alleged assault in which the complainant accused the defendant of taking advantage of her while she was vulnerable and that he had broken the trust between them. The defendant replied stating he was sorry and it would never happen again. The complainant then explicitly accused the defendant of being a rapist and made immediate reports to a friend, a colleague and their church.

The complainant reported the matter to the police 2 years later and maintained her allegations to trial 5½ years later where she was extensively cross-examined on her account.

The defendant was unanimously acquitted on all counts.

Fiona was instructed by Namita Pawa of Hallinans.

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