Egyptian national convicted of raping woman

A jury has convicted an Egyptian national of raping a woman he met after she became lost on a night out in Dublin city.

Mohamed Okda (30) was staying in a friend's flat in the city in February 2014 when he met the woman in an upset state.

Okda, formerly of Coolfin, Rathdowney, Co Laois had pleaded not guilty to two counts of raping the woman and one count of sexual assault at a flat in Dublin city centre on a date on February 9, 2014.

After a seven day trial at the Central Criminal Court a jury took just under three hours to return unanimous guilty verdicts on all counts.

Mr Justice Michael Moriarty thanked the jurors for their care and diligence and told them it was a verdict he agreed with. He remanded the man into custody for sentence on July 28th.

Gardaí had objected to a defence application to allow Okda remain on bail. Sean Guerin SC, prosecuting, told the court that there was an issue regarding his residency here and gardaí considered him a flight risk.

In her evidence the married mother said that she lived outside Dublin and was visiting the city with two female friends for a night out. At the end of the night she said she was drunk and tired.

She lost her friends and became upset because they weren't responding to texts or phone calls. The accused man approached her and offered to help her find her friends, she said.

He suggested she come back to the flat where she could continue to try to contact her friends on her phone. The woman said that back at the flat she lay down on a sofa bed in the living area of the house and blacked out.

She said that when she came to she could feel Okda trying to touch her and move her clothes. She said she told him to stop and said she was married and had children.

“I told him that I wanted to go, I wanted to leave, to find my friends,” she testified. She said he took her glasses away and she couldn't see at all without them.

“When I tried to say no, he kept pushing me back down,” she said. She tried to use her mobile phone but he took it off her.

She said he was telling her to open her mouth to perform oral sex and he was aggressive. She became frightened and and stopped resisting in the hope that he would finish and let her go

“I asked him not to kill me. I told him I had children and a husband. He had this dazed look. I was afraid if I didn’t do he would kill me”.

She said he then raped her and after ejaculating she asked could she leave and he said yes. She partly dressed herself hurriedly and left the house without her glasses, she said.

She said she was disoriented and as soon she left the house she ran across the road and started trying to stop cars. Four cars passed her before a taxi stopped and she told him she had been raped, she testified. The driver took her to the local station.

After his arrest the man told gardaí that he had consensual sex with the woman. He said she started touching him first and that he didn't do anything she didn't want him to do.

Under cross-examination by Ciaran O'Loughlin SC, defending, she said she wasn't sure whether she said to the taxi driver that she had been attacked or raped.

She said she did tell him “my husband will never forgive me” and said the driver replied “it's not my fault, I was attacked”. She denied that her version of events on the night was untrue or inaccurate.

Mr O'Loughlin put it to her that in the course of having sex with Okda she “suddenly became horrified” at what she was doing.

Okda denied to gardaí that he had done anything to frighten the woman and said she had behaved in a confused way during sex.

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