Uber driver charged with rape
A SYDNEY rideshare driver accused of raping a woman while driving her home says the encounter was consensual, a court has heard.
Uber driver Savenaca Rokosiga, 50, allegedly picked the woman up outside a Rouse Hill pub about 11.30pm on Saturday.
Rokosiga was supposed to drop the 30-year-old woman home but, instead, stopped his car in Marsden Park and raped her, NSW Police say.
He then took her the rest of the way to her home in Penrith. The next day the woman reported the rape to police before midday and Rokosiga was subsequently arrested at his Granville home.
He was charged with two counts of sexual assault without consent. Rokosiga appeared at Parramatta Local Court on Monday where his legal aid lawyer applied for bail.
"The accused does not deny that he had a sexual encounter with the complainant," magistrate Peter Feather said referencing court documents.
But the driver claimed the encounter was consensual.
"Much will depend on the evidence given by the complainant at any future trial," the magistrate said.
The court heard Fijian-born Rokosiga is a father with strong community ties in Sydney and has no criminal history in Australia.
Rokosiga's wife sat silently in the public gallery wiping her eyes as he sat silently.
The police prosecutor argued Rokosiga was at risk of failing to appear because, if found guilty of the accusations, he would be imprisoned for a long period. The protection of the victim would also need to be considered.
But Mr Feather said an apprehended violence order and strict bail conditions could "mitigate" the risks.
He granted bail on the condition Rokosiga report to police daily, not enter Penrith and not contact his alleged victim.
He's also required to pay $2000 surety, live at his family home in Granville, surrender all passports and not drive Uber.
Uber removed Rokosiga from their platform after becoming aware of the report, a spokeswoman said.
"This report is deeply upsetting and something no person should go through," she said in a statement.
"We have reached out to law enforcement to offer assistance." Rokosiga's Facebook profile reveals a doting husband and family man, frequently dining out with his wife, attending community events at sporting clubs and visiting his homeland.
He describes himself in the profile as a "down to earth kinda guy". He is due back in court on May 9.
AAP understands Uber had received no previous complaints about Rokosiga of a similar nature.