Tyne & Wear

Durham University rape accuser 'dishonest and dangerous'

Durham Crown Court
Image caption Durham Crown Court heard the alleged rape took place in March 2014

A student who accused a former head of Durham University's Union Society of rape and sexual assault is "dishonest and dangerous", a court has been told.

Louis Richardson, 21, of Jersey, denies raping the student at his home in March 2014, when she was "crazy drunk" an unable to consent.

He also denies sexually assaulting her at a friend's house.

Durham Crown Court heard Mr Richardson, of Midvale Road, St Helier, received mixed messages from the woman.

The court heard the woman, who cannot be identified, and Mr Richardson swapped flirtatious Facebook messages after the alleged rape.

'Highly manipulative'

In her closing speech for the defence, Philippa McAtasney QC told the jury: "She is a highly manipulative, dishonest, dangerous young woman.

"When you consider all the evidence, you will see how unreliable, unsafe, unfair and dishonest her word is."

She said the woman referred to Mr Richardson, of Midvale Road, St Helier, as "darling" in Facebook messages after the alleged rape and sexual assault took place.

Mr Richardson is also accused of sexually assaulting another student, at a house party in October 2014, while she was in bed and feeling unwell.

Earlier, the trial heard Mr Richardson, ex-secretary of the university's Union Society, told police it was "likely" he and the student had had sex after he had seen her in Durham's Klute nightclub.

He said they had both been drinking, but were not drunk.

The trial continues.

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