No formal complaint against England four
Friday 04 July 2008
The woman at the centre of a sexual assault allegation against four members of the England rugby union team today revealed some details of her claims in an attempt to correct "misinformation" in the media.
In a letter sent to the Rugby Football Union by the woman's solicitors Chapman Tripp, she confirms her unwillingness to make a formal police complaint in order to avoid the "extensive and invasive news media" that would "threaten her privacy and personal life".
However, she has clarified details of what she claims occurred in a private room at the team's Auckland hotel in the early hours of June 15.
She has alleged four players were involved in a "sexual violation", and that she had been invited back to the hotel by one member of the team.
And the woman states she was referred to the police by medical professionals.
The four unnamed players have strenuously denied any wrongdoing.
The woman's solicitors contacted the RFU because the union's chief disciplinary officer Judge Jeff Blackett is undertaking an investigation into the conduct of the four players.
The woman states she is not willing to "deal directly with the inquiry" but wanted to provide some "essential context".
An allegation of rape and/or sexual assault was made to Auckland police on the evening of Sunday June 15, the day after England's 37-20 first Test defeat to New Zealand.
The alleged incident was said to have occurred at the team's Hilton hotel early that day.
The woman has alleged in the letter that she was invited back to the team hotel "by a member of the England team" where she claims the assault occurred.
Auckland police tried to speak with the four players while they were based in Christchurch ahead of the second Test.
Following legal advice, the players declined to be interviewed on the grounds that no formal complaint had been made.
The RFU launched their own disciplinary investigation, which Judge Blackett hopes to conclude in the coming days.
The solicitor's letter has denied reports their client is a lapdancer and countered suggestions she knows the woman who sold her 'Angel Barbie' story to a Sunday newspaper.
In detailing that medical professionals referred her to the police, the woman has also confirmed it was not a boyfriend who first alerted the authorities, as was suggested in some reports at the time.
The solicitor's letter adds that the woman "has not had, and wishes not to have, any communication with the news media".
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