NewsCrime Desk

Former Goldman Sachs banker accused of rape of 20-year-old Irish girl goes on trial

Court: Jason Lee is accused of raping a 20-year-old Irish woman
Court: Jason Lee is accused of raping a 20-year-old Irish woman

An Irish student who was allegedly raped by a former investment banker could testify in person as the trial begins in the US today.

The female student, who was 20 at the time, alleges she was raped by former Goldman Sachs managing director Jason Lee in his $35,000-per-month rental home on August 19, 2013.

The Irish student, who was on a J1 at the time, was celebrating the end of the summer trip in East Hampton, New York when she and her friends went back to a party at the home of the then 37-year-old.

It is the prosecution’s case that Mr Lee followed her to the bathroom and raped her. Mr Lee, who is married, insists he is innocent. He has waived his right to a jury trial and so the case will be heard by a judge only.

The prosecution has requested to present evidence in the case that shows Mr Lee’s friend tried to hire an escort for him before the alleged rape and that Mr Lee also tried to kiss the victim’s friend before the alleged incident.

“This goes to intent,” Assistant District Attorney Kim Shalvey told the court.

“It shows him trying to get companionship hours before the rape. The two prior bad acts contributed to the narrative and the background to the rape.”

The prosecution also told the court the defence plan to question the woman about her Facebook page and indicated she would challenge this

New York State Supreme Court Justice Barbara Kahn said she would hold a separate hearing on the matter.

Reports in the US claim the Irish woman has flown into New York ahead of the trial. Her identity will be protected in the US courts.

The trial is expected to last two weeks. Mr Lee faces a minimum sentence of five years if convicted of rape.

Irish Independent