Page last updated at 14:04 GMT, Monday, 9 November 2009

Woman 'was raped' in McDonald's

Scales of justice

A woman was allegedly raped by her ex-partner in the toilet of a McDonald's restaurant in Belfast, a court has heard.

The man, who has not been charged with the rape, faces separate charges of intimidation, making threats to kill and breach of a restraining order.

The 33-year-old who is an asylum seeker from an African country allegedly held his partner at knifepoint in the toilets before raping her.

He was refused bail.

The charges the man faces relate to phone calls he allegedly made in an attempt to get the woman to drop the rape complaint against him.

Describing the circumstances of the alleged attack in the Donegall Place restaurant in May, a prosecuting lawyer said the woman was aware that her assailant had a knife and "very afraid" that he would use it.

A decision is yet to be made on whether to charge the man with rape.

In one of the calls he allegedly warned her: "You're a dead person walking, my boys are operating in the north."

"Mafia"

The court heard a claim that he then phoned again to say he knew where her mother lived.

It was alleged that when she asked him to stay away, he replied with a similar threat: "The mafia are all coming over, you're a dead person walking."

Opposing bail, the prosecution lawyer said the police public protection unit had carried out a risk evaluation on the accused.

"He has been assessed as a category three potentially dangerous person - that is the highest in a three tier category," he added.

"The police would have extreme concerns if this applicant were released on bail."

The defendant said that the alleged victim had contacted him by telephone because he had a new partner.

The judge ruled that it was not an appropriate case to grant bail.

He added that a fresh bail application could be made if forensic examination of telephone records backed the accused's claims that his ex-partner contacted him.



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