‘Ambushed, then held prisoner... and raped’
Date published: 06 September 2013
Woman tells court of ‘horror
A WOMAN wept as she described to a hushed courtroom how she had been held prisoner, sexually attacked and then raped in the squalor of a pitch-black flat in Oldham.
The victim claims she was ambushed as she got out of a lift on the third floor of the building on Union Street in early March.
She says she was blasted with a fire extinguisher, then dragged to the empty “dark and miserable” apartment.
Manchester’s Minshull Street Crown Court was told that throughout her ordeal, she was repeatedly punched and kicked and subjected to threats.
At one point she tried to run way, but was chased and hauled back inside.
Before the court are Michael Parker (24), and Michael Cregan (21) who plead not guilty to charges of false imprisonment and assault occasioning actual bodily harm.
Parker, of Poynter Walk, Sholver, also pleads not guilty to two counts of sexual assault.
Cregan, of Raper Street, Oldham, pleads not guilty to rape.
A trial jury heard that the pair believed her to be a drug user and initially bullied and intimidated her, thinking they could force her to obtain the supplies they craved.
The “victim”, who is in her 40s, told them she had given up drugs and had no contacts, but Jane Dagnall, prosecuting, said Parker and Cregan refused to accept what she said.
The violence continued, the court heard, and then Parker told her he wanted to have sex with her.
She angrily refused and Cregan offered her £10 for sex, it was alleged. When she rejected him, he raped her in the bedroom of the flat which had no electricity supply, and was in complete darkness, she claims.
While the attack was going on, the jury heard that Parker opened the door a number of times asking when it would be his turn.
The woman eventually managed to escape, fled into the street and contacted the police.
Ms Dagnall said the victim, who gave evidence at the trial by video link, had been left with bruising, swellings and cuts.
The woman told police in a filmed interview: “They were asking me if I knew people who could help them score drugs.
“I told them I didn’t know anyone, because I didn’t do it any more. They told me if I didn’t call someone, they wouldn’t let me go. I was terrified.”