Woman tells High Court she was raped in bed holding her baby

 

A woman wept in court today as she described being raped as she lay in bed with her baby girl.

Her daughter, then almost one, had been conceived as a result of a previous rape by Neil Ireland, the woman told the High Court in Dunfermline.

Ireland (39), of Methil, is on trial accused of sex offences committed in various parts of Fife between 2008 and last year.

The woman, who claims to have been raped six times by Ireland, said she had also tried to hang herself after one of these incidents.

The rapes of this woman are alleged to have happened in Cupar, Methil, Leven and Dysart.

The woman described how she had fallen asleep with her daughter lying over her arm, while Ireland was to be sleeping on a sofa in the living room.

She was woken by Ireland coming into her bed. “I tried to get up but he held me down,” the woman told the court.

“He tried to pull down my pyjama bottoms and I told him to stop. He told me I better be quiet so I didn’t wake up my daughter.”

“What happened next?” asked advocate depute Keith O’Mahony.

“He went on to rape me. I asked him to stop more than once,” said the witness.

“Did he stop?”

“No and then my daughter woke up.”

“Did he stop then?” asked Mr O’Mahony.

“No,” answered the woman.

The woman also said she was raped during her pregnancy and as a result had to go to hospital because of bleeding.

She told the court that after a previous alleged rape at Ireland’s then home she barricaded herself in the bedroom and tried to hang herself using the cord of her housecoat but he dismantled the door and stopped her.

The woman said Ireland would lock her in his house when he went to work and he would physically assault her, leaving her with bruises.

It is alleged that Ireland sexually assaulted five women, including ten offences of rape.

Ireland denies ten charges that:

On 30th January 2008 at an address in Cupar he indecently assaulted a woman.

On various occasions between 1st January and 30th June at a different address in Cupar he assaulted another woman and raped her on three occasions.

On an occasion between 11th January and 31st January 2012 in Tayport he sexually assaulted a third woman, who was pregnant, while she was asleep,

On various occasions between 11th April and 1st May 2013 in Cupar he assaulted a fourth woman and raped her three times.

On various occasions between the same dates he assaulted the same woman, detained her in a flat against her will, punched and slapped her face, back and legs, seized hold of her arms, seized hold of her neck, pinning her against a wall, all to her injury.

On various occasions between 2nd July and 22nd December 2015 at addresses in Methil, Leven and Dysart, he assaulted the same woman and raped her on three occasions.

It is alleged that the woman was in bed with her baby daughter on two of these occasions.

It is further alleged that Ireland sexually assaulted a fifth woman in Methil on various occasions between 1st April and 31st December 2015.

On an occasion between 1st November and 30th November 2015 at his home in Methil he raped the same woman while she was asleep.

On 5th December 2015 at his home he sexually assaulted the same woman.

The final charge is that on 16th August last year he assaulted a woman in Methil by slapping her on the buttocks and face.

The trial before Lord Uist continues.

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