Oritse Williams trial: JLS star raped ‘spaced out and zombified’ woman after she returned to his hotel room to look for her phone, court hears

‘I felt more pathetic, if that makes sense. I felt just worthless' 

Zamira Rahim@ZamiraRahim
Tuesday 14 May 2019 17:56
Ex-JLS star Oritse Williams departs Wolverhampton Crown Court

Oritse Williams, a former member of pop group JLS, tried to have sex with a "spaced out and zombified" woman and then raped her when she returned to his hotel room to look for her phone, a court has heard.

Prosecutors allege that the 20-year-old victim was assaulted after the woman and two of her friends met the singer after he performed a solo gig at a nightclub in Wolverhampton.

Williams, who enjoyed chart success after shooting to fame on The X Factor in 2008, denies raping the woman.

The 32-year-old, of Croydon, south London, is standing trial at Wolverhampton Crown Court alongside his tour manager Jamien Nagadhana, who denies charges of sexual assault and assault by penetration in connection with the same incident. Both deny the charges.

Prosecutors alleged that the rape took place after the woman and two of her friends had met Williams and Nagadhana and been given free drinks at the nightclub.

The victim - who said she felt sorry for Williams during the concert - and her friends approached the singer "for a joke" in the VIP area of the club, the court heard.

After one of the women vomited and had to be put in a taxi home, the alleged rape victim and her remaining friend went back to the hotel with Williams and Nagadhana.

Ms Moore told jurors: "All three of the women began to feel a lot more affected by alcohol than they felt was normal. They all began to feel odd."

One of the women felt she had been drugged, she said, adding: "That was her feeling but there is no forensic evidence to support that."

Williams attempted to have sex with the complainant "almost as soon as they had got into" the hotel room but she had made it clear she did not want to have sex and left, the court heard.

A hotel worker had remembered the two women as being "spaced out and zombified" and also described them as being "not properly with it", Ms Moore said.

Describing how the woman went back without her friend to look for her mobile, she said: “That was a grave mistake.”

She added: "Once she was back in the room - she had to knock on the door - Mr Williams effectively jumped on her. He picked her up and pushed her down on the double bed. She had already made it clear that she didn't want to have sex with him.

"All she thought was 'I don't want this to happen'."

Support free-thinking journalism and attend Independent events

The complainant told police that she had sworn at Williams during the alleged rape and told him to get off her - but felt she had not been "as 'fighty' as she should have been".

The woman claims Mr Nagadhana - who she described as Williams' "really weird friend" - sexually assaulted her during the alleged rape, the court heard.

At one point the woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, said she “laid down like a dead body”, in an attempt to end the attack.

After several minutes she ran from the room crying and told hotel staff she had been sexually attacked.

Police officers were called the following day and both Mr Williams and Mr Nagadhana, 32, were arrested.

“I was quite scared,” the victim said in a police interview. I felt more pathetic, if that makes sense. I felt just worthless.”

Following his arrest, the court heard, Williams told investigators that the alleged victim and her friend had wanted to go back to the hotel and had instigated sexual activity.

There had been a "free-flowing vibe" at the nightclub, he said, adding that he was getting on well with the alleged victim.

During his account, Williams told police: "I'm the artist so I guess the focus is always getting to me. I think both of them, they both kind of wanted to be involved with me in some degree."

The trial continues.

Additional reporting by agencies