A Perth man who was accused of indecent assault on a Fortescue Metals Group mine site in WA’s Pilbara has been acquitted because the woman accusing him of the crime could not be located.
- Rory Stevenson was entitled to have the case dealt with, a magistrate found
- He had pleaded not guilty to the alleged attack on a Pilbara mine site
- His accuser has not made contact with prosecutors since August last year
Rory George Stevenson was working as a contractor for FMG when he was charged with unlawful indecent assault.
He pleaded not guilty to the charges in August last year and a trial was set down for this week.
But Perth Magistrates Court was told this morning that the prosecution had not had any contact with the complainant since August last year.
The police prosecutor said she had moved from her known address, attempts to contact her via social media had failed and she was not contactable by phone.
The court heard Australian Border Force personnel confirmed the woman was overseas.
But the police prosecutor said there was “nothing to suggest she’s not a willing witness” and sought an adjournment.
Mr Stevenson’s lawyer Lisa Boston said her client was ready to go to trial, and to suggest the complainant was interested flew in the face of the evidence.
The complainant was “completely non-responsive”, she told the court.
Ms Boston said there was also a lot of evidence related to the stress and hardship caused to her client.
Magistrate Michelle Harries concluded the complainant did not want to participate and that Mr Stevenson was entitled to have the matter dealt with, saying there needed to be a swift administration of justice.
The magistrate said he should be acquitted.