Trial for alleged 1991 rape

September 23, 2012 Agencies
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A man who allegedly raped a Holocaust survivor two decades ago will face trial, a NSW court ruled on Friday. 

Robert Paul Webb was charged last year with two counts of aggravated sexual intercourse and aggravated assault on the woman, who died last year, in Sydney in 1991.

Webb, who was 18 at the time, was only charged when police discovered a semen stain on the ground in the car park where the alleged rape against the then 70-year old survivor occurred and used it to match his DNA.

The Holocaust survivor, who cannot be named, gave video testimony to police just months before she died last year.

But Webb’s legal counsel argued in the NSW Court of Criminal Appeal Friday that his client could not receive a fair trial because the Holocaust survivor could not be cross-examined, according to a report by the Australian Associated Press.

The three judges denied his request and allowed the prosecution to admit the now-deceased woman’s video statement into evidence, AAP reported.

Crown prosecutor Sally Dowling said the woman, a Holocaust survivor who immigrated to Australia in her 20s, had been the victim of a “calculated attack” and it was in the public interest for Webb to stand trial, the report stated.

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