The committal hearing into allegations that Theo Theophanous raped a woman in his Parliament office more than 10 years ago is continuing this week.
During last week’s court proceedings the testimony of the alleged victim’s friends raised questions about the veracity of her allegations.
“She was a fantasist and there was a series of incidents where she was caught out in lies,” testified one witness who had introduced Mr Theophanous to the woman, according to a report in The Age.
Another friend of the alleged victim testified that the woman had talked to him in 1999, one year after the alleged rape, about an incident inside the Parliament.
The witness claimed that although no specific details were discussed the woman was smiling when recounting the story.
“She was talking to me and she mentioned that a married man had attempted to seduce her,” stated the witness. “…she mentioned Parliament House and he made a move on her in his office… I remember that she was smiling and she appeared quite happy talking about it… The impression I got was that if something did happen, it didn’t involve sex,” the testimony reads.
The brother of the woman testified on Monday that on the night of the alleged rape he noticed red marks on the face of his sister and when he questioned her about them she refused to explain.
The court also heard from a commercial lawyer who was initially approached by the alleged victim to represent her case.
The lawyer revealed that the woman had promised him “20 percent or above if she was compensated” and told him that “this [case] could be your retirement package”.
He clarified that after discussions he had with a member of the police he advised the woman to refer the matter to police.
On Friday, the prosecution presented evidence that an intern in Mr Theophanous office had accused him of inappropriate behaviour in a police statement.
The alleged incident happened the same year as the alleged rape. “Lo and behold, we have another woman who makes an allegation not of rape, but of inappropriate behaviour on a number of occasions … using his position of power in the workplace,” Prosecutor Michele Williams, SC said, according to media reports.
The claim by the intern was that Mr Theophanous had touched her thigh and made remarks of her being attractive and gorgeous.
Defence lawyer, Robert Richter, QC objected to the introduction of this evidence although later withdrew his objection.
He argued that the introduction of such knowledge in the committal hearing could prejudice future jurors if the matter was sent to trial.
The hearing continues.