Former Australian gov’t staffer raped colleague in Parliament, choose finds | Politics News

Bruce Lehrmann loses defamation assert against broadcaster and journalist above 2021 interview with his accuser.

A previous governing administration staffer in Australia raped a colleague in the country’s Parliament, a decide has observed, rejecting his defamation declare versus a broadcaster that aired his accuser’s allegations.

Justice Michael Lee ruled that Bruce Lehrmann, an adviser to the preceding conservative authorities, was not defamed in the tv job interview with Brittany Higgins and that he experienced raped her in a minister’s place of work in 2019.

Lee produced his locating on the equilibrium of possibilities, a reduce regular than that employed in legal trials to set up guilt beyond a affordable doubt.

Lee said it was “more possible than not” that the previous authorities staffer was “hellbent” on owning sexual intercourse with a lady he discovered eye-catching and knew to be inebriated.

“In his pursuit of gratification he did not care a person way or a further whether or not Ms Higgins recognized or agreed,” Lee reported.

“Mr Lehrmann raped Ms Higgins,” the decide mentioned.

“I hasten to worry this is a locating on the balance of probabilities.”

Lee also criticised Network 10 for airing the allegations against Lehrmann, locating that carrying out so “fell shorter of the standard of reasonableness”, and claimed Higgins experienced been a “complex, and in many respects, unsatisfactory witness”.

Lehrmann did not make any remark to the assembled media scrum as he still left the court.

Lehrmann, who has always preserved his innocence, sued Community 10 and journalist Lisa Wilkinson in excess of the 2021 interview with Higgins that did not recognize him by title.

Lehrmann went on demo for the alleged rape in 2022, but the proceedings collapsed without the need of any results in opposition to him right after a juror was found to have carried out analysis into the situation in violation of court principles.

Prosecutors deserted a proposed retrial immediately after determining it would severely harm Higgins’s mental well being.

Higgins’s allegations convulsed Australia’s political landscape when they have been initially created community in 2021, prompting a flurry of dialogue about sexual violence and the treatment method of females in politics.

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