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Belfast rape charge teen under investigation for separate attack, court hears

By Alan Erwin

A 17-year-old boy was remanded in custody on Monday accused of carrying out a rape in Belfast.

The youth, who cannot be identified because of his age, is charged with an alleged attack in the Black Mountain area of the city last Friday. He appeared before Belfast Magistrates' Court to face four counts of rape and six counts of sexual assault against a female of undisclosed age.

A detective revealed that at the time of the alleged offence the teenager was on police bail following a previous complaint of rape in March this year.

She confirmed he has not been charged over that incident, but said the investigation is ongoing.

Opposing his release, the detective claimed there was "an extremely similar modus operandi" between the two alleged attacks.

"There are a number of people who were present over the weekend when this took place that police have yet to speak to," she said.

During cross-examination the detective agreed that the accused fully cooperated with investigating officers.

A defence solicitor said his client insists any sexual contact was consensual.

"This is essentially one person's word against another," the lawyer argued.

"It's a 'he said, she said' case that needs to be tested at trial."

Bail was refused, however, due to the potential risk of interference with the investigation.

District Judge Ken Nixon remanded the accused in custody to appear again by video-link on Friday.

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