Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 27 December 2014

Man raped wife in campaign of abuse, court told

A woman was raped twice by her husband following a prolonged campaign of physical and mental abuse, the High Court has heard.

Police also fear the man will try to emotionally blackmail her into dropping the complaints against him, prosecutors said.

The 56-year-old accused, who cannot be named to protect his wife's identity, faces two counts of rape and a further charge of sexual assault.

The alleged offences were committed at the couple's Co Armagh home on July 5 and 7.

He was initially granted bail but returned to custody for a series of alleged breaches of a ban on contacting his wife.

Opposing his new attempt to be released, prosecution barrister Conor Maguire said: "Police would say the facts that I can set out would indicate the applicant, if proven to be true, engaged in physical, sexual and emotional abuse of his wife over a lengthy period of time.

"That culminated in the two incidents which give rise to the charges.

"It's in the context of that relationship that the police have concerns that this applicant will emotionally blackmail the injured party and will seek to discourage her ultimately from continuing with her complaint." The judge, Mr Justice Deeny, declined to hear details of the alleged offences.

But he was told that since being charged, police seized a note from the man asking his wife to stop the case and suggesting he could live separately in their house.

Further messages threatening to kill himself were left on her phone, the court heard.

Mr Justice Deeny granted him bail on condition that he makes no further attempt to contact his wife.

Banning him from going within 100m of the former matrimonial home, the judge warned him that his wife has a right to be left alone.

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