NewsCrime Desk

Court hears Newcastle Falcons player ‘raped woman several times’

Zach Kibirige (Pic: Twitter)
Zach Kibirige (Pic: Twitter)

A professional rugby player did not listen to a woman's demands to "pack it in" and raped her several times at her home, a jury heard.

Zach Kibirige, 21, who plays for Newcastle Falcons, was invited over to watch a film and have a cuddle but "used fear and force to get what he wanted", the prosecution alleged.

The England under 20 player denies four counts of rape, attempted rape, sexual assault and assault by penetration. He told police after he was arrested that the encounter was unplanned but consensual.

Newcastle Crown Court heard the victim was too scared to shout out.

Chris Smith, prosecuting, said Kibirige had said to the woman "you know you want it - tell me you don't want this" as he sexually assaulted her.

Mr Smith added: "But ladies and gentleman, she didn't want it and couldn't tell him.

"Sometimes when you're frightened it's impossible to shout out.

"Fear takes hold.

"Sometimes if someone has their hands at your throat, it's all you can do to breathe."

The prosecution alleged the woman, who cannot be identified, did not need to say "no" at that point as she had already told him what she expected when she invited him round to her home.

Mr Smith said: "She could not have been clearer because (she) had only invited this defendant round to her house for a film and a cuddle."

The prosecution said it was spelled out in "black and white", in Whatsapp messages they had swapped prior to meeting up in November.

Mr Smith said: "(She) had to say 'no' again to this defendant once he arrived at her house.

"She had to immediately before the sexual assault when the defendant had started kissing and touching her in ways she did not want and so she told him to pack it in, but the request went ignored.

"The bigger, faster and stronger professional rugby player was not listening and he used fear and force to get what he wanted, and then he left."

The complainant told a friend what had happened, and she furiously sent him an online message, accusing him of rape.

Mr Smith said: "His reply? Silence. His response? Simply to delete the messages that had passed between himself and (the complainant), to break contact."

After he was arrested he told police the encounter took no more than an hour, it was unplanned but consensual.

Mr Smith said Kibirige told police "he hadn't even stopped to think to use the condom in his wallet".

The prosecution told the jury: "This is a simple case, there really was not any room for confusion, or mixed messages.

"This was simply a young man out for what he thought he could get and what he thought he could get away with."

The trial, expected to take around three days, continues.

In a video of the complainant's police interview, she said she met the defendant on the dating app Tinder.

The case was adjourned until tomorrow.