Former JLS star Oritse Williams has denied behaving like a “sexual predator” and told a jury that a woman he denies raping thanked him when they parted company.
Giving evidence on the fifth day of his trial, the 32-year-old singer said the complainant had pulled him out of a nightclub after initiating a “highly sexually charged” display in the venue’s VIP area.
Williams, 32, is alleged to have raped the “spaced out” woman in his hotel room after taking a taxi from a Wolverhampton club following a solo gig in December 2016.
Wearing a dark suit, white shirt and black tie, Williams told a jury at Wolverhampton Crown Court that the woman began kissing him in his room after telling him she wanted to spend the night with him.
After taking the jury through details of his personal life and musical career, Williams said he met the complainant and two of her friends in the early hours at a meet-and-greet event.
Describing the three women as excitable and very loud, Williams said he had got along “very, very well” with the alleged victim after she and her friends initiated “quite raunchy” behaviour.
During Williams’s evidence, defence QC Mark Cotter asked him whether he had a clear independent memory of the women, who were captured on CCTV while “bouncing” on his lap.
The singer answered: “You don’t forget three girls ‘grinding’ you all at the same time – you don’t need CCTV footage to remind you of that.”
Mr Cotter then asked: “Had you ever seen three girls behaving like this before?”
Williams replied: “Never, this was the first time. It just came out of the blue.
“The girls started putting on a highly sexually charged display. It looked like it was designed to attract attention and it certainly caught my attention.”
Midway through his evidence, Williams said there was “no way” he was being a sexual predator in the club and that the women had “initiated” what happened at the venue.
The court heard Williams and two of the three women went back to his hotel room, where they went into a bathroom and then both left his room.
According to Williams’s account, the alleged victim then returned to his room and knocked on the door.
“She said she didn’t want to leave and she wanted to spend the night with me. She came into the room, she put her arms around me and she kissed me.”
Williams claims a consensual sexual encounter took place before he fell asleep, waking to another knock on the door from the women who had returned to the room with a staff member looking for a mobile phone.
After the woman found a phone, Williams said, he offered to help her continue looking for a second missing item.
“She said, ‘Don’t worry, thank you so much for finding the phone’,” Williams told the court.
“Everything was good and she left.”
Under cross-examination from prosecutor Miranda Moore QC, Williams said he had previously had a consensual encounter with two women after JLS broke up in 2014.
Asked why he had not told the police about the previous encounter in interview, Williams responded: “This situation was not that.”
Williams’s co-defendant Jamien Nagadhana, also 32 and from Hounslow in west London, denies sexually assaulting the woman during the alleged rape.
The trial continues.
- Press Association