Jury reaches verdict in jail rape trial
A PRISONER accused of sexually assaulting and raping a fellow inmate has been found not guilty.
In a three-day trial at Ipswich District Court, the 30-year-old man defended the charges, arguing that the accusations were false and motivated by the complainant’s desire to be transferred to a single cell or to get parole.
In the Crown prosecution case, the defendant faced two charges of sexual assault, one charge of anal rape, and two counts of common assault.
In evidence, the jury was told the fellow prisoner alleged the Ipswich man put his penis between his breasts and ejaculated on his chest, made sexual comments about them, and groped and sexually assaulted him on the bottom bunk of their cell before raping him in the shower.
He alleged the prisoner made kissing noises and blew kisses at him while saying he wanted “to tit f**k him”.
The complainant claimed the defendant threatened him in the shower, with the accused allegedly saying: “I’ll bash you into the wall and say you slipped on the soap”.
Defence barrister Mitch Rawlings argued that the large physical size of both men made it impossible for the man to be sexually assaulted in a 70cm gap of the bunk bed in the manner alleged.
Mr Rawlings maintained that the combination of two simultaneous actions allegedly done by the prisoner against his client “was just so unlikely” it would lead the jury to at the very least have reasonable doubt.
The defence said the accuser was motivated to make false accusations because he was annoyed that his alleged attacker gave away his stereo, and at the loss of enjoyment of no longer being in a single cell.
He also queried whether the sexual assaults could have taken place in the 10 or so minutes before 6.30pm when television news was on, and at a time when it was usual for officers to conduct their checks on the cells.
Trial evidence included the prisoner saying that while he did not give consent, he did not resist the sexual advances as he was fearful of the consequences.
He accused the man of punching him in the head before each of the two sexual encounters.
He said there had been blood in the shower water when he was allegedly raped.
The prisoner stated he delayed making a complaint to correctional officers out of fear for his safety.
The defence argued that no sexual activity occurred at all, that the man was lying and if there were any doubts the jury should reject his evidence.
It was also argued that the accuser had a history of committing acts in an exploitative way, and also had motive to lie to obtain the advantage of parole.
The prisoner complained to a doctor that he had suffered some weeks of rectal pain and bleeding due to being sexually assaulted.
The court heard that a medical report by Dr Wang found no obvious abnormalities except for an internal cyst.
An examination of the accused prisoner’s penis did find a slight swelling of foreskin and an apparent tear that could not be determined as being an injury caused by a sexual assault.
Dr Wang said the most common form of such reported bleeding was haemorrhoids.
With the return of the Not Guilty verdict on all five charges, Judge Dennis Lynch QC discharged the accused, who is no longer a prisoner.