Indecent assault case: Businessman gives evidence in his own defence

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The prominent businessman accused of indecently assaulting three young men says he never got into, or onto, a bed with one of the complainants.

Auckland court coat of arms.

Photo: RNZ / Patrice Allen

The businessman, whose name is suppressed, is on trial in the High Court at Auckland.

He denies three charges of indecent assault and two charges of attempting to dissuade a witness.

His co-accused, who also has name suppression, faces one charge of attempting to dissuade a witness, which he too denies.

Giving evidence in his own defence, the businessman was asked by his lawyer David Jones QC about the allegations made by the third complainant, about an incident in 2016.

Earlier in the trial, the jury heard the complainant was staying at the businessman’s house.

In his evidence, the complainant said he had food poisoning late one night and went to bed.

The complainant said the businessman had come into his room completely naked and suggested they go back to his bedroom.

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Later that night, the complainant said he heard a knock at the door and the accused got into bed with him and started touching his penis and body.

Jones questioned the businessman about what happened that night.

The businessman said he had gone to bed, but had forgotten his phone.

He said he never slept with clothes on, and because it was late and there were few people in the house, he just went downstairs to get his phone.

The businessman said he noticed a door to one of the rooms was ajar, so he went back to his room and put underpants on.

When he went to investigate, he said he found the complainant rolling around, incoherent.

The businessman questioned whether the man had food poisoning, but said he thought it was best to check he was okay.

Questioned by Jones, the businessman denied that he had suggested the complainant go back to his room with him.

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He said he “never” got into or onto the bed with the complainant, and only stood beside it.

Jones asked his client if he had touched the complainant’s penis, and the businessman replied that he had not.

The businessman also denied attempting to dissuade the complainant from giving evidence, and said he was not aware of any other attempts by anyone else to do so.


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