Man on 40-year-old rape charge

A MIDDLE-AGED Lismore woman, who has accused her brother-in-law of constantly raping her 40 years ago when she was aged between 13 and 15, has told how she feared a flogging from her family if she revealed what was taking place.

The allegations of child sexual abuse involving the now 66-year-old grandfather, who was aged in his 20s at the time, is being heard at his trial before a Lismore District Court jury.

The man is pleading not guilty to a series of offences under old legislation, including charges such as carnal knowledge of a girl aged between 10 and 16 years; ravish and carnally know; assaulting a female and commit an act of indecency; and sexual assault with an act of indecency.

The alleged offences took place between March 1967 and December 1969 when the young girl was living or visiting various rural properties in the Lismore area, helping an older sister take care of her young children or babies.

Yesterday the woman identified a selection of old black and white photos of her family which were kept in her mother’s photo album.

She identified an orange top and shorts that she received as a present for Christmas in 1966 just months after meeting her future brother-in-law for the first time.

The woman said it was only a few months later that he first had sex with her in the back of his black FJ Holden.

“Yes, it was 1966, toward the end of the year,” she said.

“He told me I couldn’t say anything about this, that it was our secret and if I told anyone I’d get a flogging.”

The woman, in answer to questions from the Crown, said she never consented to the man’s sexual advances.

While staying at his farm, she would help milk the cows in the early morning. She claimed he would enter her bedroom and sexually assault her, or would assault her in the dairy while his wife was at the house.

“He was always touching my bottom, my breasts and making comments,” she said.

The jury was instructed this material could not be used because it did not form part of the criminal charges.

Asked how often he had sex with her while she was living at the house, the woman replied ‘almost every night’.

The third day of the trial before Judge James Black will continue today.

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