'Rape victim' found at house party

Published Tuesday, 28 August 2012
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An alleged rape victim was found lying unconscious outside a house party in Co Tyrone, the High Court heard on Tuesday.

'Rape victim' found at house party
The High Court heard the case on Tuesday. (© UTV)

The woman woke up in hospital with no memory of events surrounding the suspected sex attack, prosecutors said.

Ivo Sow, 25, a Portuguese national with an address at Drumcoo Green, Dungannon, denies a charge of raping her. He was refused bail due to fears he could flee if released.

The court heard how the woman had been with a friend at a nightclub in Cookstown on 20 April. They were said to have accepted an invite from another man to go for a drink at another address in the town.

Tessa Kitson, prosecuting, said the alleged victim claimed to have had a total of eight beers during the night.

"The last thing she remembers is being given a bottle of beer... after arriving at the house party," Mrs Kitson told the court.

"Her next memory is of waking up in hospital and being very sick."

Others were said to have told her that Sow had sex with her while she was at the party.

Forensic medical tests confirmed DNA attributed to the accused, the court heard.

Sow was arrested and at first denied knowing the woman, but later claimed she had brought him to steps outside the address and initiated sexual contact.

He also claimed she was fully conscious throughout.

But a friend of the alleged victim told police she saw Sow on top of her as she lay on the steps, according to the prosecution.

"She challenged the applicant and she says the applicant got up, adjusted his trousers and ran off," Mrs Kitson added.

A defence lawyer said the accused maintained at interview there had been consensual sex.

"He indicates she was more than a willing participant, in fact she was a leading party in terms of sexual contact," he added.

But refusing bail, Lord Justice Higgins said: "The charge he faces is a serious one and if convicted the penalty would be severe.

"That must raise in a case involving a foreign national the issue that he might flee the jurisdiction."

© UTV News
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