Jury asked to focus on issues

THE jury in the trial of a man accused of raping his wife has been asked to consider whether the man honestly believed he had consent from the woman.

The 37-year-old Burnett Heads man has pleaded not guilty in Bundaberg District Court to the charge, in a trial that has been going since Wednesday.

In her closing argument, Crown prosecutor Sandra Cupina told the jury the trial was based on three issues.

“Did he try and have sex with his wife; did he succeed in penetration; and the question of whether he honestly and reasonably believed he had consent to do so,” she said.

The prosecution has alleged the man raped his wife in their bedroom about 11pm on January 6, 2009.

Ms Cupina said the allegations made by the woman had been consistent throughout the case, unlike the man's police interview, which was played to the court on Thursday.

“He remembers lots of details of the night, up until the half-hour period in the bedroom when the rape occurred,” she said.

But defence barrister John McInnes said that was not the case.

“The woman would concede things in evidence when she was called on, and sometimes not even then,” he said.

Mr McInnes said consent for sex could arise in many informal ways.

“There are grey areas in relationships,” he said.

“Something might be worth a try in some eyes and, in others, it is just not on.”

Mr McInnes said the woman had said while giving evidence that the couple's relationship was unstable.

“Really, at that point, there was no love left. Do her feelings involved allow her to give justification of the account?” he said.

Judge David Searles will give his summing up on Monday before the jury retires begin its deliberations.

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