A woman, who accuses a 63-year-old man of sexually abusing her as a little girl before plying her with sweets and toys, has told the Royal Court he took her “innocence” and that the assaults ruined her life.
The allegation came during day one of the trial of Robert George Carrel, who denies six counts of procuring acts of gross indecency and two of sexual assault against a girl under 10 between the late 80s and early 90s.
Opening the case for the prosecution, Crown Advocate Richard Pedley told the jury of eight women and four men that Mr Carrel would take the girl to his flat and ask her to touch him, before taking her to the shops to buy her treats - a pattern he repeated on more than one occasion.
He explained that Mr Carrel was living in the UK when the allegations first came out and that he was open to being interviewed until he realised what the "subject matter" was.
Later in the trial, he said the jury would hear from another woman who claims Mr Carrel used to invite her in his bedroom to watch pornography and asked her to do to him "what they did in the videos". The Crown Advocate said that each woman had made their allegations independently, but that it was “beyond coincidence” that the two should be similar.
Pictured: The alleged victim gave evidence in the Royal Court yesterday.
The Jury then heard from the alleged victim, who described Mr Carrel as having an "aggressive face" and as someone who frequently dressed as a biker, with Doc Martens, a leather jacket and jeans.
She said he gave her a "false sense of security", adding: “I trusted him. I thought he cared … He used to make me do things.”
The woman said that Mr Carrel would repeatedly tell her she was a "good girl" and urge her not to tell her mother about what was happening to her. After this, she claimed he would take her to the shop to buy her sweets and treats - once including a teddy bear with a red love heart.
The woman said that, while she didn’t understand what was going on – “I didn’t know anything about sex,” she told the jury – she later realised what had happened. “I think it’s disgusting, I was abused,” she said.
Pictured: Advocate James Bell is defending Mr Carrel.
One instance of abuse she recalled was Mr Carrel allegedly entering her room naked one night and touching her, before being caught by her mother.
Defending Mr Carrel, Advocate James Bell challenged the woman’s account, saying that his client had never abused her, but that it was instead another man, who had made her watch "kiddy porn". She said she clearly remembered being assaulted by Mr Carrel, stating: “He took my innocence, he took my life away.”
Continuing to challenge her, Advocate Bell said she had waited for Mr Carrel to be released from prison in the UK to make her complaint, but the woman maintained she wouldn't send an "innocent man" to jail. She also denied discussing compensation from the alleged assaults, saying: “It’s not about money."
She explained that when she first told her mum about what had allegedly happened, her mum didn’t believe her. “She wanted to believe she was a good parent,” the woman said. She however said her mum clearly remembered catching Mr Carrel naked in her daughter’s bedroom.
Pictured: The trial is expected to continue until Wednesday.
Questioned by Crown Advocate Pedley, the woman told the jury Mr Carrel had never showed her any pictures and that the man Advocate Bell said she was mistaking Mr Carrel for had never taken her to a shop or touched her inappropriately.
The jury also heard from the woman’s mother, who recalled finding Mr Carrel in her daughter’s bedroom one night. “He had a weird look on his face,” she said. “It was weird, just weird… like he was giggling at something, to himself…
“I didn’t know what to say to him. What do you say? It was weird…. I have a memory to this day. Distinct, like I remember it properly, because it was so weird.”
“What my daughter said, it was not imagination. She had never seen it on TV,” the mother added. “At first it was the shock of it. You don’t want to believe it, do you?”
The trial continues today under the direction of Royal Court Commissioner Julian Clyde-Smith. It is expected to conclude on Wednesdsay.
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