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Friday 23 February 2018

'I thought female was going to film me', woman tells rape trial

Paddy Jackson arrives at Belfast Crown Court
Paddy Jackson arrives at Belfast Crown Court
Stuart Olding
Blane McIlroy
Rory Harrison

A woman who claims to have been raped by two Irish rugby players did not seek help when another female walked in on the alleged attack, a court has heard.

Belfast Crown Court was told she was "petrified" of being filmed.

During cross-examination on day six of the trial, Brendan Kelly QC said: "Why did you not ask for her help?"

The woman responded: "What was she going to do? I didn't know her. I thought she was going to film me."

Paddy Jackson (26), from Oakleigh Park, Belfast, and Stuart Olding (24), from Ardenlee Street, also in the city, deny raping the same woman at a house in south Belfast in June 2016.

Blood

Mr Jackson denies a further charge of sexual assault.

Two other men have also been returned for trial on charges connected with the incident alleged to have happened at an after-party following an evening at a Belfast nightclub on June 28, 2016.

Blane McIlroy (26), from Royal Lodge Road, Ballydollaghan, Belfast, has pleaded not guilty to one count of exposure, while Rory Harrison (25), from Manse Road, Belfast, denies perverting the course of justice and withholding information.

Mr Kelly, defending Mr Jackson, added: "She might have helped you and stopped them raping you.

"That's what she could have done. You would have been able to point to the blood and the tears, if they were there."

The woman said: "In that moment, I was so petrified of being recorded I just turned my head away. It was too late. I had already been raped."

The woman, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, has been giving evidence from behind a screen.

The court has previously heard how she had been attending an after-party at Mr Jackson's house with a number of other men and women.

She had consensually kissed Mr Jackson in a bedroom earlier in the night.

The rape is alleged to have happened when she returned to the bedroom to retrieve a clutch bag, the court heard.

She rejected suggestions she had consented to sex and invited Mr Olding to join in.

Mr Kelly said: "When Stuart Olding walked in, you were engaged in consensual sexual acts, were you not, with Paddy Jackson? When he walked in it was you who motioned him towards the bed. Do you accept that or not?"

The woman replied: "No, I do not."

She was asked whether she was aware of any "sexual noises" such as groaning and moaning "more consistent with pleasure than pain" before the witness had walked into the bedroom.

"There were no pleasurable noises coming from me, no," she told the court.

At one point during proceedings, the woman wiped away tears. She also contested defence claims she had taken her top off by "agreement".

Although she could not recall who made the alleged request, the woman said: "I was ordered to take my top off. I wanted it to be over, so I took my top off."

Earlier, the woman denied "teasing" one of the accused. The complainant was quizzed about the circumstances surrounding a consensual kiss with Mr Jackson.

The court heard how the woman and Mr Jackson had been in an upstairs bedroom of his home when the kiss happened. She said: "He [Mr Jackson] instigated the kiss. It was a bit of a lunge. It lasted seconds before he started to undo my trousers."

The woman claimed to have "firmly" told Mr Jackson she was not interested in taking things further and left the room.

However, Mr Kelly suggested it was Mr Jackson who left the bedroom first. "Paddy Jackson left that room before you did because he became tired of your teasing," he said.

The woman responded: "I was not teasing."

She later added: "I left the room alone as soon as he started to undo my trousers."

The complainant wiped away tears as graphic details of the alleged rape, which she says happened when she returned to the bedroom to retrieve a clutch bag, was discussed.

"Why did you not give him a firm 'no' this time and leave the bedroom?" asked Mr Kelly.

She said: "He was not taking no for an answer."

The woman claimed she was frozen with fear and that her physical demeanour had not been encouraging.

She added: "You cannot underestimate how scared you are in these situations, Mr Kelly."

The complainant acknowledged that her recollection was in part "hazy".

When probed further about consent for the kiss, the woman responded: "Yes, it was, but that's not indicative of consent for anything else."

Desperate

The 12-person jury has heard how the alleged rape happened at an after-party at Ollie's nightclub.

The woman, who had been socialising in the VIP area of the club, was quizzed about how she came to be in Mr Jackson's company. Some footballers were also present.

Mr Kelly said: "Is not the truth of what happened, as far as outside Ollie's is concerned, you were desperate to join the footballers at their party?

"When that invitation was not forthcoming, what you saw was Paddy Jackson. You waited some time and joined his group, his party."

The woman said: "That's not how I remember it."

The trial continues.

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