A nurse from Offaly who was sentenced to two-and-a-half years in prison for the digital rape and deprivation of liberty of a mother-of-two in a Hotel bathroom, in Brisbane, has filed an appeal claiming that the judge misdirected the jury.
Anne Marie O'Loughlin's counsel told Brisbane' Court of Appeal that her trial was unfair. She was convicted in December 2010.
During the trial the judge referred to O'Loughlin's attack as one of "persistent sexual aggression." She was told at her hearing that she would be eligible for parole on March 3, 2012, her 27th birthday.
O'Loughlin's lawyer, Jeff Hunter, told the appeals court that jury has asked the trial judge to give them guidance on how they could use drunkenness to resolve the issue of mistaken belief, according to reports in the Courier Mail.
Hunter stated that the judge had given an incorrect direction to the jury. The jury were given a written version of the direction.
"The complainant's inability to set out how she ended up in the cubicle with a woman she didn't know is a significant matter," Mr Hunter said. He was referring to the fact that the woman did not know how she has explained how she had ended up in the toilet with O'Loughlin. She had also given a different account of the event to her husband shortly after the event.
The jury should have had real concerns about whether they could convict beyond reasonable doubt and they also should have had reservations about consent.
The Court of Appeal has reserved its judgment.
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