Jury to deliberate on alleged sex assault

The 10 men and two women on the jury for the trial of a middle-aged sports coach accused of sexually assaulting a teenage girl in 2004 are expected to begin deliberations today.

The defendant pleaded not guilty to all 15 charges of sexually assaulting the girl whom he was coaching.

Prosecution and defence lawyers addressed the jury yesterday. Judge David Riordan will conclude his address to the jury today on legal and evidential matters.

The complainant, who is now aged about 30, testified in the trial, which started on Friday, that she was a teenager being coached by the accused when the disputed incidents occurred. She said they happened between February and October 2004.

Imelda Kelly, prosecuting, said to the complainant that the defence case was essentially she had made up the allegations. Vincent Heneghan, defending, said: “None of these events happened, not one of them, in the way … described or in any way.”

Mr Heneghan yesterday told the court that there were massive discrepancies in the prosecution case.

Ms Kelly suggested yesterday there was sufficient evidence on which they could convict the accused. She asked the jury why the complainant would lie and make up all the complaints.

Mr Heneghan said that, from their life experience, the jury could be satisfied that 15 opportunities would not have occurred whereby the accused could have committed these crimes.

He said: “The evidence is telling. She created these pictures [during psychotherapy] from dreams. These are her words, not mine.”

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