The accused was in a relationship with woman who had a 10-year-old daughter. A number of allegations made of aggravated indecent assault including masturbation and inappropriate touching. The woman claimed to have seen the accused masturbating over the child when the child was a baby, but did not mention it to anybody. The matter proceeded to a committal hearing where the woman was cross-examined about the reason for delaying her complaint and yet still going out with the accused. Ultimately, the matter went for a jury trial in the Sydney District Court
Not guilty on all counts. The child’s vivid claims were assisted by her gaining access to pornographic material which enabled her to give a description of the alleged assaults with great detail. Notwithstanding this, the child made numerous statements as she allegedly recalled things which contained significant discrepancies. Expert evidence was called for the defence to disprove some of the fanciful claims. For example, she claimed that one day the accused put her in the spa and turned the taps on and indecently assaulted her. The expert was able to demonstrate that due to the size of the spa and the water flow, it took nearly half an hour to fill the spa, making it impossible to have committed the offence in the manner that she described. The jury returned a verdict in quick time. The mother was a hopeless and unbelievable witness. The girl was caught out lying, but remained stoic in the witness box. The jury were not fooled. This case demonstrated yet again just how easy it is for a person to make a false claim.
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