New evidence emerged months after a man was convicted of sexual assault. Now a retrial has been ordered.
New evidence emerged months after a man was convicted of sexual assault. Now a retrial has been ordered. John Weekes

Sex attack conviction thrown out after perjury bombshell

"WHEN you write your statement, make sure you over-exaggerate it”. 

That is what a woman allegedly told a witness before a man went on trial for serious sexual offences.

But a Mackay District Court jury never heard about that.

And in August 2016, the jury found a man guilty of sexual assault.

Now, that man's sexual assault conviction has been thrown out and a new trial ordered.

The man appealed against the sexual assault conviction.

He said a miscarriage of justice happened because fresh evidence from a witness was now available. 

Queensland Court of Appeal said that evidence came from a witness known only as BR.

The woman who alleged she was sexually assaulted said the man came up beside her and pulled the top of her dress down.

She claimed he caused her breasts to be exposed, and said "Great tits”.

Under cross-examination, the woman discussed Family Court proceedings involving her and the alleged attacker.

She denied child custody issues were at play, saying the case was about him wanting money.

But BR has now told a different story.

The woman allegedly told BR the criminal charges related to the man "touching a child”.

And it's claimed she told BR the man was trying to take over her businesses but "would not get anything”.

The woman allegedly "wanted the man put in jail” and asked BR to make a police statement.

BR said the woman urged him "Make sure you over-exaggerate it”. 

The appeal court said BR saw none of the incidents the woman raised with him. 

But when saying "I don't remember that”, the woman allegedly replied: "Yes you do love, you were there”.

The woman "was very insistent that he had seen things which he had not seen,” the appeal court added. 

BR revealed some of this information in December 2016.

The accused man's lawyers got in touch with him.

The appeal court was told BR's evidence "was devastating”.

The accused man said the new evidence showed his accuser "had strong familial and financial motivations” to have him jailed.

Justice Hugh Fraser said the fresh evidence was "relevant as evidence of a bias” and suggested there was a miscarriage of justice.

Justice Anthe Philippides and Justice Philip McMurdo agreed with their colleague.

The appeal was allowed, the man's conviction sentence quashed, and a new trial ordered. -NewsRegional 


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