Belfast Telegraph

Co Tyrone man 'tried to rape pregnant ex-partner', court hears

Prosecutors claimed the 28-year-old defendant also slapped and verbally abused the woman (stock photo)
Prosecutors claimed the 28-year-old defendant also slapped and verbally abused the woman (stock photo)

By Alan Erwin

A Co Tyrone man allegedly tried to rape his pregnant ex-partner when she refused to perform a sex act on him, the High Court heard has heard.

Prosecutors claimed the 28-year-old defendant also slapped and verbally abused the woman, accusing her of being unfaithful.

The man, who cannot be named to protect the alleged victim's identity, faces charges of attempted rape, threats to kill, common assault, harassment and improper use of a public communications network.

He was granted bail but banned from entering the town where she lives.

A Crown lawyer said the woman contacted police in May this year, claiming her former partner had attacked her while she was pregnant.

According to her account the accused had been at her home and asked her to perform oral sex on him.

When she refused he grabbed and tried to subject her to a serious sexual assault, as well as slapping her in the face, it was alleged.

"She said the applicant went 'mental', saying the baby she was carrying at the time wasn't his," prosecution counsel submitted.

"He accused her of cheating and called her a slut."

It was claimed that the man then sent her a series of text messages in a campaign of harassment.

During police interviews he denied any sexual or physical violence.

The court heard DNA paternity tests were carried out after the alleged victim gave birth.

Based on those results, defence counsel said his client accepts "there's no longer any possibility of a reconciliation".

He added that the former couple had been in a "jealous" relationship, with checks on each other's phone leading to PIN numbers being changed.

Granting bail, Mr Justice McAlinden backed defence arguments about delay in the case.

He said: "There hasn't really been any significant progress in prosecuting a matter which appears relatively straight-forward."

As part of release conditions the judge imposed a curfew, complete alcohol prohibition and ordered the accused to have no contact with his ex-partner.

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