A former Olympic athlete has been found guilty of sexual and physical assaults on his then-wife and an ex-girlfriend.
The man, whose name is suppressed so as not to identify the complainants, learnt his fate in the High Court at Auckland yesterday after a two-week trial. The jury began deliberating on Friday afternoon.
Dressed in a smart dark grey suit, he showed little emotion as the verdicts were read.
He was found guilty of three counts of rape, one of sexual violation, one count of injuring with intent and one count of male assaults female.
He was cleared of a further count of rape and one of sexual violation, kidnapping, two counts of injuring with intent to injure and one of assault.
The charges he was found guilty of related to both complainants.
The jury were told they must not name the Olympic athlete, whose suppression will continue unless a further order is made by the court overturning it.
It was the second trial for the man, who was accused in 2010 of sexual and physical assaults on his then-wife.
He was found not guilty of several counts but the jury was unable to reach a decision on two counts of rape and one count of strangling the woman.
This case was a retrial on those charges, but they were also joined by allegations he had raped, sexually violated, assaulted and kidnapped another partner 10 years earlier.
During his trial, the man took to the witness stand to deny the violent events ever happened in either relationship.
He impassively denied assaulting the women, telling the jury they never had an abusive argument, but argued like "any ordinary couple would".
"Given we're human, we may have had an argument," he said.
In one incident in 2008, the former wife alleged the defendant ripped up her study notes and raped her when she fobbed off his sexual advances.
The man said he remembered tearing up the notes in a heated argument when she refused to have sex with him, but denied raping her.
He told the jury he never forced his then-wife to have sex with him or struck her with his fists, but had slapped her on two occasions and grabbed her throat during a play-fight.
"I never punched my wife. Ever. I'm absolutely certain of that."
Throughout the trial, the man has showed little emotion and often struggled to recall events from the past relationships.
Many of the questions put to him over his alleged violent outbursts and sexual assaults were met with "no" or "it's not true".
He was remanded in custody until his sentencing at the end of September.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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