Accused rapist set free on bail

A MAN accused of raping a Warwick teenager has been released on bail despite fierce objection from the police prosecutor.

The 20-year-old Southern Downs man - who cannot be named to protect the girl - was released from custody on Wednesday afternoon.

He appeared in the Warwick Magistrates Court charged with two counts of raping the 15-year-old, one of carnal knowledge, one of possessing child abuse images and 10 of using a mobile phone to send indecent material to a child. Police prosecutor Steve de Lissa asked Magistrate Graham Lee to keep the man behind bars for not only the safety of the alleged victim, but also the man himself.

Snr Const de Lissa said another male had made threats about enacting his own style of justice if he were to get his hands on the defendant.

Concerns about the man contacting the alleged victim and witness through social media sites such as Facebook were also presented to Mr Lee.

The man has allegedly tried to "dissuade" the girl out of seeking treatment at the hospital or going to police and Snr Const de Lissa said he was concerned the man would try to contact the girl if he was released on bail.

Mr Lee said after "serious consideration" he decided to grant the man bail but prohibited him from entering Warwick, other than to attend court or appointments with his lawyer.

A further condition of his bail is he is not to speak about the case on any social media site.

The man is due to re-appear in the court on July 17 and must report to police three times a week in the meantime.

A person found guilty of rape faces a maximum penalty of life imprisonment.



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