Man accused of raping woman met via Facebook claims consent
A man accused of raping a woman he met through a Facebook Marketplace sale claims their sexual encounter was consensual and she had even invited him to her house the following day.
Mitkumar Maheshbhai Patel, 36, has taken the witness stand on the second day of his trial in the Brisbane Supreme Court where he has pleaded not guilty to raping the then-22-year-old woman in September 2019.
Patel told the court on Wednesday he had moved to Australia in February of 2019 from India where he worked as a pharmacist in the country's largest hospital.
The Crown alleges Patel, who now manages a service station, and the complainant met online through Facebook Marketplace when the woman was selling a mobile phone.
Crown Prosecutor Sarah Farnden said the woman and Patel met at his Chermside home to make the sale but then drove together to a nearby ATM to get cash.
The woman alleges that when they were sitting in the car outside his home after returning from the shop, Patel raped her with his hand and the act was done without her consent.
Defence barrister Gerard Elmore told the court his client had a "very different version" of events and would claim the pair actually had two sexual encounters and the woman kissed him and invited him to come to her home the next day.
Patel said during their drive to the ATM, they spoke about their relationship status and both said they were single.
He said when they parked at the shop, he asked her if she wanted to have sex with him and touched her leg.
"Then I touched her leg and she was getting pretty excited she was getting the feeling," he said through a translator.
"Then I asked her was she having a good feeling and she said yes.
"Then she got a bit excited then I tried to open the button of her shorts but it was a bit tight so she helped me open that button."
He said he and the woman both touched each other sexually before the woman asked him to stop.
"Then she said, 'stop, stop not now I need the money first', so I said ok," Patel told the court.
He said while they were walking to the ATM he asked the woman if she wanted "romance" and she said she did so they made plans to meet up the following day at her home.
Patel gave evidence that when they arrived back outside his home, they kissed in the car before the woman touched him and he put his hand in her pants and touched her.
"Then suddenly she said, 'stop stop stop, not now, not here, you come to my place tomorrow', so I said thank you very much and I hopped out the car," he said.
Under cross examination from prosecutor Ms Farnden, Patel agreed that despite English not being his first language, he understood words including "no", "don't" and "stop".
The trial continues.
Originally published as Facebook Marketplace rape accused: It was consensual