Man admits assault on 'beautiful woman'

18:47, Jan 17 2013

A 27-year-old Lake Hayes man, who told a Queenstown woman she was "the most beautiful Kiwi woman he had ever seen" before indecently assaulting her, has been remanded until February 11 for sentencing.

Martin Arenatti-Cuna, originally from Uruguay, admitted the indecent assault on December 16 when he appeared before Judge Kevin Phillips in the Queenstown District Court this week.

Arenatti-Cuna had been drinking in Queenstown before asking the victim about her private life and repeatedly complimenting her.

He kissed her on the mouth and asked her to come into his house on several occasions.

He attempted to pull the woman out of a car and kissed her cheeks and face before licking her hand when she tried to push him away.

He then started to rub her breasts and asked her to kiss him back before sliding his hand up her skirt and touching her upper thigh.

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Lawyer Mike Newell said Arenatti-Cuna had been drinking while his wife and child were out of town. He was not used to alcohol, which was why the offending occurred.

However the judge said: "I do not accept that for a moment."

Police prosecutor Sergeant Ian Collin said the victim had felt threatened because she was alone at the time.

"These are serious allegations and have serious impacts," he said.

The judge ordered an emotional harm and pre-sentence report for sentencing and warned Arenatti-Cuna a custodial sentence was likely.

The Southland Times