NRL star Jack de Belin’s alleged rape victim was filmed making a sexual hand gesture towards his co-accused in the hour before the attack, a jury has been told.
The Wollongong district court on Thursday was shown CCTV of the woman and the footballer’s co-accused, Callan Sinclair, interacting on the dancefloor of CBD bar Mr Crown about 12.30am on 9 December 2018.
The woman had earlier told the jury she only recalled “pecking” Sinclair on the dancefloor three to five times, labelling it “nothing serious”.
De Belin’s barrister, David Campbell SC, told the woman that before the lip-on-lip kisses, she was filmed making “this V sign with your tongue” in the direction of Sinclair.
Sinclair, 23, was then filmed, minutes later touching her on the breasts, the lawyer said.
The woman responded she hadn’t recalled either incident and had been in shock when she gave her statements to police in the week after the alleged attack. “I’m not lying,” she said. She denied she was attracted to Sinclair on the night.
After being shown the CCTV footage and a selection of stills displaying the intimate dancefloor conduct, Campbell suggested it “surely … helps bring back to your memory of the event”.
“No, it does not,” the alleged victim responded. “I’ve got the photo, so yes, I have done it but I do not recollect what I was doing at that time.”
De Belin, 29, and Sinclair have pleaded not guilty to five counts of the aggravated sexual assault of the then-19-year-old woman in a North Wollongong unit.
The alleged assault took place between the trio’s departure from the Mr Crown bar about 12.50am and 1.57am when they began making their way back to the city.
Both men say the sexual activity inside the unit was consensual. The woman says she never wanted to have sex with the men.
Campbell’s cross-examination on Thursday also scrutinised alleged inconsistencies in the woman’s account after the alleged attack in which she travelled with the men to a nightclub but never entered.
After playing security footage, he questioned whether she was pretending to not remember some details of what happened near Fever nightclub.
“I actually do not remember,” the woman replied. “What happened on that night in that room, I remember. It was quite horrific. I don’t get to sleep because of it. Two years down the track and I still don’t get to sleep. So no, I do not remember that little part at Fever. I am very sorry.”
She also denied she was “on a journey to engage in some sexual activity” when travelling in a tuk-tuk with the men before arriving at the unit.
Under further questioning about the journey to the unit, she told the court she recalled the incident in the unit “in my sleep”.
“I’m sorry I do not remember every single, little, nitty, gritty bit,” she told Campbell. “I am human, not a robot.”
The woman has told the jury that de Belin, who plays for St George Illawarra, undressed her and forced himself on top of her. He then made way for Sinclair and moved his groin to the then-teenager’s head.
The men allegedly alternated positions as the woman went “dead and numb inside and just let it happen”, the court has heard. The trial continues.