Woman branded a 'liar' in court during Brighton and Hove Albion players' sex assault trial

Clockwise from top left: Steve Cook, George Baker, Anton Rodgers and Lewis Dunk

Clockwise from top left: Steve Cook, George Baker, Anton Rodgers and Lewis Dunk

First published in News by , Chief reporter

A woman who said she was sexually assaulted by a group of footballers was branded a “prolific liar” who sought relationships with Albion players.

The 21-year-old blonde said that she had found compromising photographs of herself, unconscious and being sexually abused by Brighton and Hove Albion players Anton Rodgers, 19, George Barker, 21, Lewis Dunk, 21, and former Seagull Steve Cook, 21.

The woman, who was 19 at the time of the incident in July 2011, said she was initially scared to tell the police the full truth about what had happened to her because the men were footballers.

Mark Cotter, representing Barker, told her: “You swept yourself up in a rollercoaster of lies.

“You told a pack of lies to the police. You said you were attacked in the street.

“You lied about the clothes you were wearing and your underwear.

“I’m going to suggest you have a tendency to exaggerate the truth, to say things that never happened.”

She said: “I was absolutely humiliated. They know what they did to me and should never have done it.

“Yes I did lie to get out of work, but I was 19 and wanted to go out with my friends.”

Interest in footballers

Mr Cotter told the jury at the Old Bailey that the victim had lied to her work on several occasions, including once claiming her drink had been spiked.

Brian O’Neill QC, defending Lewis Dunk, told the woman: “At that time you had a keen interest in footballers. You were seeking relationships with at least three Brighton and Hove Albion footballers.”

Peter Lodder QC, representing Anton Rodgers, suggested to the victim: “When you saw the photographs you started to have second thoughts about what you had joined in with the night before, which was just larking about.”

The woman disagreed.

Rodgers, Barker, Dunk and Cook all deny sexual assault and voyeurism.

The trial continues.

Follow the case in The Argus live blog from the Old Bailey every day.

The case so far

THE CASE SO FAR

Anton Rodgers, George Barker, Lewis Dunk and Steve Cook "deliberately humiliated” the 19-year-old woman for their own sexual gratification, the Old Bailey was told on Tuesday, January 22.

The footballers – drunk on a night out celebrating the opening of the new American Express Community Stadium in July 2011 – performed degrading sex acts on the unconscious teenager at the Jury's Inn hotel in Brighton and took photographs as trophies  the court was told.

Richard Barton, prosecuting, said: “These were the actions of a group of arrogant young men labouring under the misguided belief that by reason of their privileged position they could with impunity take advantage of a young woman in this way, because even if she realised what they had done to her she would not dare report it. "

The woman wiped tears from her face as she described the degrading images of herself she says she found on Anton Rodgers' phone.

She said she felt “ashamed” and “angry” but within a few months “everyone” at the  club had seen the photos and one player threatened to publish them on the internet “to spite her”.

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