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He’s guilty of ‘bad sex’, not sexual assault, defense tells jury in rugby star Jarryd Hayne rape case

He’s guilty of ‘bad sex’, not sexual assault, defense tells jury in rugby star Jarryd Hayne rape case
The jury is deliberating the verdict in the rape case of former Australian rugby player Jarryd Hayne. The defense said he showed “terrible” sexual prowess, but did not force himself on the woman, who is accusing him of assault.

The defendant caused “a lot of pain, discomfort, and grief” with his performance in bed, but never meant to harm the complainant, Hayne’s barrister told the jury in a closing statement on Thursday. “To be frank, his sexual prowess turned out to be terrible.”

Well, it was bad sex.

The trial of the former National Rugby League player is coming to an end at Newcastle District Court, with the jury now deliberating on the verdict. Both the defense and presiding Judge Peter Whitford urged them to disregard the athlete’s celebrity status and judge him on the merits of the case.

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The prosecution alleges that, on September 30, 2018 Hayne went to the 26-year-old woman’s house on the outskirts of Newcastle and sexually assaulted her. He arrived drunk and expected a sexual encounter – “the quicker the better”, as Crown Prosecutor Brian Costello described it, and kept a taxi waiting outside with the meter running.

The woman, who is now 28, admitted that, under different circumstances, she may have consented to have sex with Hayne, but on this occasion, it was not the case. When he tried to kiss and touch her, she told him to stop, she stated in court. Hayne pushed her face down into the pillow, ripped off her trousers and attacked her. He stayed for about 45 minutes, engaged in two sexual acts, and caused two separate injuries to her genitalia, the jury was told.

Hayne, who pleaded not guilty, denied that the complainant ever told him to stop. He said the injuries were caused by accident when he was performing oral sex on the woman. “If there hadn’t been blood, though, it is unlikely there would be any complaint made about sexual assault,” his defender, Phillip Boulten SC, said.

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Among the evidence presented at the trial were the lyrics of the Oasis hit ‘Wonderwall’. Hayne is alleged to have looked for the Ed Sheeran cover of the song on the woman’s laptop. He said it was one of his “go-to songs” meant “to break the ice”. However, he denied that by “breaking the ice” he meant getting the woman in the mood for sex.

He also denied leaving a AUS$50 note ($37) on the woman’s pillow to bribe her into silence, saying the money must have slipped out of his pocket when he checked his phone.

The defense presented the woman’s communications with a female lawyer acquaintance. The lawyer had warned the alleged victim that all footballers were sleazy after she had told her about a planned meeting with Hayne. After the encounter, the woman wrote the lawyer that she was right, but didn’t mention any allegation of rape.

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The prosecution said the alleged victim and the lawyer didn’t really know each other well enough to talk about the ordeal. The victim only reluctantly told her mother the next day and it took a month before she confided in her sister. But she did send messages to her best friend detailing what had happened between her and Hayne, including photos of her bloodied bed and her injuries. She said she thought he had bitten her and that she felt violated.

Hayne was accused of sexual assault in a separate case in the US in 2015. He was never charged with a crime, but was sued in a civil court in 2017. The case was settled out of court after he paid $100,000 to the alleged victim. Hayne denied the allegations from the onset.

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