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  • Writer's pictureBy The Financial District

Accused Rapist Loses Defamation Trial vs. Aussie TV Network

An accused rapist who had sought to clear his name by suing one of Australia’s largest television networks for defamation has lost his case, with a judge finding that, on the balance of probabilities, he committed the crime, Hillary Whiteman reported for CNN.


Higgins alleged she was raped by a colleague in an exclusive 2021 television interview with Network Ten’s “The Project” program. I Photo: Gareth Edwards Wikimedia Commons



The verdict brings an end to a complex legal case that has captivated the Australian public since 2021 when former political staffer Brittany Higgins accused her colleague Bruce Lehrmann of raping her inside Parliament House after a night of drinking in 2019.


“Mr. Lehrmann raped Miss Higgins,” Justice Michael Lee announced towards the end of a lengthy ruling watched by thousands live on YouTube from the Federal Court in Sydney Monday.



Higgins alleged she was raped by a colleague in an exclusive 2021 television interview with Network Ten’s “The Project” program, which also raised questions about the official response by ministers and political staffers in the aftermath of the alleged assault.


After the interview aired, Lehrmann was charged with sexual intercourse without consent, but the trial was abandoned in 2022 due to juror misconduct and not revived due to fears about Higgins’ mental health.




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