File photos
File photos Kat Smith

Dad says sex abuse claims would destroy him, his daughter

A SUNSHINE Coast father begged a 15-year-old girl to keep allegations of sexual abuse between them, claiming it would destroy his and his daughter's life.

During the trial of a 51-year-old man charged with two counts of indecent treatment of a child under the age of 16, a jury was played the pre-recorded phone call where he asked the teen not to take her allegations any further.

In the recording the man, who pleaded not guilty to the charges at the Maroochydore District Court on Tuesday, apologised to the teen seven times and asked her to forgive him.

During the trial the court was told the victim teen was the man's daughter's friend.

In July 2016, his daughter and two of her friends came home from a party but continued drinking at home. The man also had friends over, however all the adults left by 10pm. His daughter and another girl went to bed in one room and the victim was offered to sleep in a spare room. He brought the teen a glass of water to the room and began to massage her shoulders and face.

The court was told the man had qualifications in massage and did this to "bring colour back into the girl's face" who, the man claimed, did not look well. The man admitted to rubbing the girl's face, head, arms, shoulders and neck during the massage but denied allegations he groped her breasts, licked her belly button, slipped his hands down the back of her pants and rubbed her thighs and groin above her clothes.

Throughout the trial the man has denied doing anything sexual to the teen however Crown prosecutor Alex Stark said the recording painted a different picture.

While the man did not directly admit to the allegations in the recordings, he was heard to say that if he did do what the teen was claiming he was "sincerely sorry".

The phone was call was made by the victim at the police station the day after the alleged offending.

She started off the call by asking him if he remembered "what he did" and why.

The man said he had no recollection of the events and said he was "way too drunk". He apologised several times.

The teen said: "I'm your daughter's friend, I'm 15." The man replied: "Sweetie, I don't know what to say to you," he apologised again and said he hoped she wouldn't take it further.

"It would destroy (my daughter's) life, and mine."

Defence barrister Liam Dollar said his client was not apologising to the teen out of guilt but rather to calm the situation down.

He said his client was "horrified" at the allegations and was only apologising to the teen because she was upset and did not want her to "blow up".

He said his client took a "submissive" approach, but did not admit to the allegations.

He asked the jury to think "how unfair it would be" to be wrongly accused of sexual misconduct and asked how they might react if in the same situation.

Ms Dollar said the teen "exaggerated and extorted" the events and said there were several inconsistencies in her interviews with the police in comparison with her conversations with the witnesses. B

y the end of Thursday both the Crown and defence had summed up their final arguments to the jury.

The trial will continue tomorrow.



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