A chief fire officer who has been accused of raping a woman at a pub allegedly took his wife with him to confront the complainant.
Derby Crown Court heard today, Monday, January 26, how Sean Frayne allegedly went to talk to the complainant in 2013 after allegedly receiving anonymous letters mentioning her name and branding him a rapist.
Frayne, the head of Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service, denies raping the woman in 2006.
Opening the case against the 48-year-old, prosecutor Martin Hurst told jurors that Frayne claims to have had consensual sex with the woman.
But the Crown allege that Frayne had sex against her will after pulling down her trousers while no one else was present.
During his opening statement, Mr Hurst said Frayne was sent two letters by a friend of the alleged victim after she confided in him.
The letters, the court heard, suggested the woman may “avoid publicity” for a substantial out-of-court payment.
Mr Hurst added: “The defence are going to say that this is all about compensation, that she and (her friend) were in league to try and get some money out of a successful man.”
But, pointing out the time lapse between the time of the alleged rape and the letters, the prosecutor went on: “If it’s all about money, why all the continuing delay?
“The prosecution will say that this victim never wanted to tell anybody about what had happened.”
Mr Hurst added that the jury’s task was to decide whether the woman, who claims to have been raped after Frayne grabbed her arm and pulled down her trousers, had consented to sexual intercourse.