Second woman says actor touched her

  • 08/12/2016
The well-known actor is still under name suppression (File)
The well-known actor is still under name suppression (File)

A second woman has spoken in court about how a well-known actor touched her breasts and groin indecently during private acting classes.

The man, whose name cannot be published, has pleaded not guilty to two charges of sexual violation and 10 charges of indecent assault.

The alleged offending took place between 2010 and 2013 against four female acting students he was teaching in one-on-one classes.

Prosecutors say the man who ran group classes for aspiring actors, separately offered each woman private lessons because they had great potential.

He then used teaching techniques that led to him indecently touching the women's breasts and sexually violating one woman, the Crown said.

However, defence lawyer Ron Mansfield said the man never indecently touched the women and only engaged in professional teaching techniques.

He accused the women of colluding to make their claims sound more believable.

One of the women also had a consensual affair with the man.

During questioning in front of a jury at Auckland District Court on Thursday, the second woman to give evidence said she joined the actor's classes while a 20-year-old model.

After participating in a series of the man's group acting classes, the actor then invited her to take one-on-one classes with him for free.

She said the man told her it was a great privilege to give up his time to tutor her for free but she was worth it because she showed great acting promise.

During one of these sessions, he surprised her by kissing her mouth before, in later classes, he touched her breasts over her bra and her crotch over her pants, the woman said.

She said she felt uncomfortable and stopped going to his classes.

After hearing about similar experiences from two other women, she approached the police to make a complaint in 2014.

Earlier, defence lawyer Mr Mansfield cross-examined another woman and said her claims of being sexually violated were nonsense.

He said the only time the woman had sexual contact with the actor was when they had a consensual relationship away from class, including meeting in a motel for sex.

He said the woman instead fabricated a story to get back at the man after hearing claims he had kissed other women, a claim the woman denied.

He said the woman instead took the private classes because she knew other people taking them had successfully obtained paid work and that she needed to hone her skills in expressing emotions.

The trial continues.

NZN