Thursday 18 January 2018

Alleged rape victims were given tablets

Sonya McLean

A man accused of raping two friends admitted to gardai that he gave them an anti-depressant between them to "keep them happy and entertained".

He told the Central Criminal Court he had given them a quarter of a tablet each and agreed that it would have a relaxing effect on the two women. He accepted that he told the women it was "ecstasy".

The 34-year-old denied in a garda interview that the tablet would have made the friends tired or sleepy, telling gardai: "It was not my intention to put them to sleep. I just wanted them to have a good time."

Dr John Morris, a pharmacist with the Irish Medicine Board, said this specific anti-depressant had sedating properties. He later told the jury that if it was taken along with alcohol, the sedation effect would increase.

The court heard the notes from the man's interview with gardai, in which he consistently denied that he had sex with either woman without their consent and described "making out" with both girls.

He told gardai he had sex with the first girl for about 20 seconds after she stood up on the bed and pulled down her underwear.

He said he then felt like he needed to urinate so he stopped and went to the bathroom. When he returned he said the first girl had fallen asleep but her friend was awake. He said he touched this woman's arm and she responded. He touched her vagina before he had sex with her.

The man told gardai that the woman then started to "freak out on me", shouted at him for trying to have sex with her and then told his flatmate that he had tried to rape her.

The accused has pleaded not guilty to raping the first woman and has also denied charges of raping and sexually assaulting the second woman at his home on July 2, 2011.

The trial continues.

Irish Independent

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