Danushka Gunathilaka, Sri Lankan cricketer’s alleged Sydney rape

Police allegations against Sri Lankan cricketer Danushka Gunathilaka, who is accused of choking and sexually assaulting a woman he met on Tinder, can be revealed after the media won a fight in court as police attempted to suppress details of the case.

The international cricket star had matched with a woman on the dating app just days before they met on November 2, before police allege 31-year-old would go on to choke and assault the woman in her own home.

The pair spent the night in Sydney’s CBD before heading back to the woman’s house around 11pm, where the woman asked to “take it slow”.

But according to court documents, Mr Gunathilaka allegedly “forced himself” on top of the 29-year-old woman and refused to use a condom.

The international cricket star conceded to wearing the condom, only for the woman to later find it on the floor to the side of the bed.

He appeared at Sydney’s Downing Centre Local Court for the second time this week via audiovisual link wearing his prison greens.

The 31-year-old was arrested at a Sussex Street hotel in the city’s CBD about 1am Sunday and first appeared in court on Monday for a bail application, which was denied.

Media were not allowed to sit in court and report on the matter after police prosecutor Kerry-Ann McKinnon applied to have the case heard in closed court and subject to suppression order.

On Wednesday Dauid Sibtain SC represented News Corp, ABC, the Sydney Morning Herald and Channel 9 in a successful bid to challenge to the suppression orders.

Police earlier argued that details of the case should be suppressed to protect the safety of the complainant, and prevent her undue distress and embarrassment.

But after argument from Mr Sibtain, they withdrew their application, interim orders were revoked and the court was re-opened.

Magistrate Robert Williams permitted access to the police fact sheet, which prosecutors relied upon in successfully opposing Mr Gunathilaka’s bail on Monday.

According to the fact sheet, Mr Gunathilaka matched with the Rose Bay woman on Tinder on October 29 before moving the conversation to Instagram and then WhatsApp.

Police say Mr Gunathilaka attempted to encourage the woman to travel to Brisbane to see him but she declined and the pair began to have video calls, where they arranged to meet in person in Sydney.

The pair met at Opera Bar in Sydney’s Circular Quay about 8.20pm on Wednesday November 2, as the woman was already there for another function with people she knew, the facts allege.

According to court documents, they stayed at the bar for half an hour where Mr Gunathilaka had two drinks while the woman drank “about five standard alcoholic beverages”.

The pair ate dinner at Frankie’s Pizza before walking to Circular Quay Wharf 4 to catch a ferry to the women’s house.

“While waiting for the ferry Mr Gunathilaka stood in front of the complainant and pressed his body against her. The accused kissed the victim on the lips forcefully,” court documents state.

While on the ferry, the cricket player allegedly kissed the woman again forcefully and “slapped her buttocks”, to which she replied: “Oi”.

When they arrived to the woman’s home, according to court documents, Mr Gunithilaka pushed the woman back onto the couch and “forced himself” on top of her.

He allegedly forcefully kissed the woman and put his hand down her neckline, into her bra and “groped her breast”.

The facts state the woman asked the international cricket star to take it slow, before he began taking her clothes off causing her to freeze.

The pair moved to a bedroom where the woman began to feel uncomfortable but agreed to continue with sexual activity only if Mr Gunithilaka wore a condom.

“He protested but eventually agreed,” the documents state.

Much of the detail is too graphic to report.

During the several hours he remained at the woman’s home, Mr Gunithilaka is accused of choking the woman multiple times and allegedly slapping her on the buttocks.

At one point the woman looked down to the floor and noticed the condom was next to the bed, realising she had been “stealthed”.

According to court documents the woman was “in shock” and did not consent to sexual activity with no condom, or choking.

The woman again asked Mr Gunithilaka to use a condom, but he allegedly refused and forcefully engaged in sexual activity.

The woman was allegedly “frozen and in shock” before the 31-year-old asked the woman to order him an Uber. He got dressed and left the woman’s house just before 1am.

The following morning the woman woke up with sore and swollen lips and called two friends. She also contacted a counselling service and saw her doctor, and was unable to work as she “couldn’t stop crying”.

The woman attended Bondi Police Station where she provided a statement and issued photos showing the messages and calls she had shared with Mr Gunithilaka.

She went to Royal Prince Alfred Hospital where she underwent a Sexual Assault Investigation Kit and brain scan to check for injury from the alleged choking.

Police immediately began investigating and seized the used condom, tissues, bed linen and clothing.

Mr Gunathilaka was arrested in the early hours of Sunday Morning at the Hyatt Regency Hotel and taken to Surry Hills Police Station where he was charged with four counts of sexual intercourse without consent.

Officers found the 31-year-old in the lift of the hotel as he had just returned on the team bus from the Moore Park precinct.

According to court documents, Mr Gunithilaka participated in an electronic interview where he “corroborated some parts of the woman’s version” but denied any violence or lack of consent.

“Investigators … do not find it reasonable that the accused believed he had the free, voluntary and consistent consent of the complainant to the particular sexual activity that took place,” court documents state.

Mr Gunithilaka applied for bail on Monday which was denied by Magistrate Robert Williams, meaning he will spend the next two months behind bars on remand until the matter is next before the court in January.

Read related topics:Sydney

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *