Trial begins for top US banker accused of raping Irish student
Former Goldman Sachs executive Jason Lee has appeared in a New York court charged with raping a 20-year-old Irish woman at a luxury summer home in New York last year.
The Irish student was visiting the US on a J1 visa when she was allegedly raped by businessman Lee (38). It is alleged he stripped naked and followed the woman into the bathroom.
Lee denies charges of rape, assault and sexual misconduct. He faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted of first-degree rape.
Read more: Top banker accused of rape ordered to stay away from Irish woman
After posting bail in September following his arrest, his lawyers said in a statement that there had been “a rush to arrest” their client – claiming that Lee had had consensual sex with the 20-year-old in September 2013. The attack is alleged to have occurred in a house located in upmarket area the Hamptons, off Long Island in New York.
The police were originally called to the house in the address in the Hamptons to investigate what was later determined to be a false car robbery.
While there, they were approached by the brother of the alleged victim who led them into the house where the sobbing student reported that she had been raped.
A female officer took her to a nearby hospital for an exam, where a nurse, trained to handle sexual assault cases, found “injuries consistent with the allegations she was making”.
It is believed that when the police arrived, Lee climbed into his Range Rover, which was dark with tinted windows, and hid for more than 45 minutes before officers found him.
Read More: J1 rape victim will return to US for trial of accused
The Irish woman is believed to have met the banker at restaurant where he was celebrating his 37th birthday with a friend.
He bought her and her friends drinks and then invited the group to a house in East Hampton that he had rented.
The group had a pool party before Lee and the alleged victim went inside. The woman told police Lee was naked when he attempted to follow her into a bathroom.
She claims as she tried to close the door he shoved it open with enough force to cause her to fall onto the floor, where he pinned her down.
The Irish woman identified in court documents as "DD" will return to the US for the trial.