Youth claims he was tied up, raped

DAVID CLARKSON
Last updated 18:06 25/02/2013

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An 18-year-old youth who accepted a ride from a stranger in Christchurch was tied up and raped on a dark country road near Darfield, the Crown alleges.

Prosecutor Claire Boshier said the youth could not identify the man who sexually attacked him in 2005, but DNA evidence had identified Christopher Michael Robb, 44.

She told Robb's trial before Justice Whata in the High Court at Christchurch that the youth was left with ligature marks on his wrists and other injuries.

Robb denies charges of unlawfully detaining the youth, sexually violating him, indecently assaulting him and stealing his wallet.

Defence counsel Steve Hembrow asked the jury to keep an open mind until they had heard all the evidence and addresses, and put to the alleged victim in cross-examination that he and Robb had a consensual sexual encounter in a car in Gloucester St earlier in the night.

The man, now aged 26, denied it. "I am not that way inclined. I'm not gay," he said on the first day of the four-day jury trial.

The witness said he had gone drinking after work with friends at a house and then in the city on the night of July 6-7, 2005. He became drunk, and left a bar at one point to smoke half a cannabis joint.

He was separated from his friends and lying ill in Livingston St when a man approached him, in a car, and offered him a ride home to rural Canterbury.

The witness said he was drifting in and out of consciousness in the car, and woke to find they were parked in a dark, rural road, where the man dragged him out of the car, forced him facedown onto the ground and taped his wrists together behind his back.

The man then removed the complainant's clothing and sexually attacked him on the ground.

"It felt disgusting," the witness said, telling the jury his attacker had used quite a lot of force.

He gave evidence from behind a screen, and had told police he could not identify his attacker. "I was facedown in the dirt, drunk and stoned, and it was dark."

The man tore the tape from his wrists before driving off and leaving him on a back road near Darfield.

Hembrow said Robb would say the youth approached him in his car in Latimer Square earlier in the night and asked if he wanted to share a joint.

They had sex, but Robb would say when the youth asked for money Robb became angry, pulled him out of the car and drove off. The witness denied any of this happened.

Boshier said in her opening address that she expected the issue in the trial to be identity.

"Although the complainant cannot identify the person who attacked him, the forensic evidence can," she said.

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The trial is continuing.

- The Press

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