Belfast Telegraph

Ex-JLS star Oritse Williams raped woman he met at nightclub, court told

The 32-year-old denies the charge

Former JLS star Oritse Williams arrives at Wolverhampton Crown Court
Former JLS star Oritse Williams arrives at Wolverhampton Crown Court

Former JLS star Oritse Williams tried to have sex with a “spaced out and zombified” woman and then raped her when she returned to his hotel room to look for her phone, a court has heard.

Williams denies raping the woman, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, after she met him at a nightclub following a solo concert in December 2016.

A jury at Wolverhampton Crown Court was told Williams, who enjoyed chart success after shooting to fame on The X Factor in 2008, was arrested at a hotel in the city after the concert.

The 32-year-old, of Croydon, south London, is standing trial alongside his tour manager Jamien Nagadhana, who denies charges of sexual assault and assault by penetration in connection with the same incident.

Opening the case against the men on Tuesday, prosecutor Miranda Moore QC said Williams claimed the woman had “instigated” sexual activity after taking a taxi back to his hotel.

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Oritse Williams in 2016

Prosecutors allege that the rape took place after the woman and two of her friends had met Williams and Nagadhana and been given free drinks at the nightclub.

The victim – who said she felt sorry for Williams during the concert – and her friends approached the singer “for a joke” in the VIP area of the club, the court heard.

Initially, conversation between the women and Williams had centred on one of the alleged victim’s friends, who the singer had said “should be a Victoria’s Secret model”.

After one of the women vomited and had to be put in a taxi home, the alleged rape victim and her remaining friend went back to the hotel with Williams and Nagadhana, the court heard.

Ms Moore told jurors: “All three of the women began to feel a lot more affected by alcohol than they felt was normal. They all began to feel odd.”

Adding that one of the women felt she had been drugged, Ms Moore told the court: “That was her feeling but there is no forensic evidence to support that.”

The prosecution claims Williams attempted to have sex with the complainant “almost as soon as they had got into” the hotel room but she had made it clear she did not want to have sex and left.

Ms Moore said a hotel worker had remembered the two women as being “spaced out and zombified” and also described them as being “not properly with it”.

Describing how the woman went back without her friend to look for her mobile, Ms Moore said: “Once she was back in the room – she had to knock on the door – Mr Williams effectively jumped on her.

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Oritse Williams in 2018

“He picked her up and pushed her down on the double bed. She had already made it clear that she didn’t want to have sex with him.

“All she thought was ‘I don’t want this to happen’.”

The complainant told police that she had sworn at Williams during the alleged rape and told him to get off her – but felt she had not been “as ‘fighty’ as she should have been”.

Following his arrest, the court heard, Williams was interviewed by police and told them the alleged victim and her friend had wanted to go back to the hotel and had instigated sexual activity.

There had been a “free-flowing vibe” at the nightclub, Williams told officers, and he was getting on well with the alleged victim.

During his account, Williams told police: “I’m the artist so I guess the focus is always getting to me. I think both of them, they both kind of wanted to be involved with me in some degree.”

The woman claims Nagadhana – who she described as Williams’ “really weird friend” – sexually assaulted her during the alleged rape.

But Ms Moore told the jury Williams, who denies rape, had told police that Nagadhana, also 32 and from Hounslow in west London, had “nothing to do with it at all” and was asleep.

Ms Moore said: “He (Williams) claimed she was fine with it – she didn’t say anything about stop or get off.”

In a video interview with police shortly after the incident, which was played to the jury, the complainant said that at one point during the alleged rape she had “laid down like a dead body” because she just wanted it to stop.

She told an interviewing police officer: “I was quite scared. I felt more pathetic, if that makes sense. I felt just worthless.”

The trial continues.

PA

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