Disabled woman held captive for ten years, court told

High Court Belfast The bail application in Belfast High Court was adjourned

A malnourished woman with learning disabilities was allegedly raped repeatedly and imprisoned for almost a decade, the High Court has heard.

The bail application in Belfast heard the woman was held at a specially adapted house in Northern Ireland.

Another woman assessed as suffering chronic post-traumatic stress said she suffered 20 years of abuse by the 57-year-old accused.

The bail application was adjourned and the accused is to remain in custody

The second woman said her abuse began after she started a second family with the man accused of a catalogue of molestation.

Prosecutors claimed one of the victims, a married woman said to have gone missing from her home in 2004, weighed just six stone after being kept locked in a sparse and unlit bedroom with no inside door handle.

Video footage of sex acts involving both women, their alleged captor, his wife and other unidentified men have been seized, a judge was told.

Trafficking

Details emerged as the man accused of controlling and running the lives of two vulnerable adults at an address in County Armagh applied for bail.

The man, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, faces charges of rape, false imprisonment and sexual activity with a person with a mental disorder.

He is also charged with indecent assault, trafficking within the UK for sexual exploitation, voyeurism, aiding and abetting rape and causing or inciting a person with a mental disorder to engage in sexual activity.

The alleged offences, committed between 2004 and January this year, are all denied.

The accused told police both women fully consented, the court heard.

His barrister also disputed any prosecution portrayal of his client was "a monster" overseeing a "house of horrors".

During submissions a defence lawyer described his client as an "infirm" man who was at one stage bed-ridden for months.

However, after being challenged by the judge on a lack of medical evidence to back his assertions, he agreed to adjourn the application.

The accused will now remain in custody until his case returns to court at a later stage.

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