Lawyers for a rising sports star found guilty of raping a teenage girl have launched an appeal against his conviction, arguing that there should have been a reasonable doubt when it came to the question of consent.
The teenager, who cannot be named because he was under 18 at the time of the April 2018 offending, was found guilty of rape and committing an act of indecency. He was sentenced last year to a suspended jail term of 11 months.
But in an appeal on Thursday in the ACT Court of Appeal, a barrister for the teenage boy said he should be acquitted.
As part of the appeal, Bret Walker SC argued the girl, also 17 at the time, had lied to an acquaintance, telling him, falsely, that she had a police and a hospital report detailing trauma to her body and the presence of semen after the pair's encounter.
The barrister said her lies so called into question her reliability and credibility that there should have been a reasonable doubt about the question of her consent.
But the ACT Director of Public Prosecutions Shane Drumgold SC, in responding to the appeal, argued the conviction should stand. He said Mr Walker had taken out of context the evidence about the girl's claims that she had official reports documenting trauma.
The girl was effectively under attack, he said, and he distinguished between her attempts to defend her reputation with the suggestion of official reports, and the criminal investigation.
The court has previously heard that the teenage girl had picked the teenager up from an 18th birthday party before driving to an oval on the night of the rape.
It found that consensual sexual activity in the back of the victim's car became non-consensual when he licked her thigh and penetrated her multiple times despite her saying no repeatedly.
The sentencing judge Justice David Mossop said the boy had continued to deny the offending and had so far not expressed any remorse.
The appeal judges Chief Justice Helen Murrell, Justice Chrissa Loukas-Karlsson and Justice Natalie Charlesworth reserved their decision.