A fake Uber driver says it was impossible to force women to touch his genitals because he needed both hands to keep his stomach out of the way.
Sampath Sandaruwan Samaranayake, 44, admitted posing as an Uber driver to lure women out of one of Brisbane’s busiest party districts in the early hours of September 2018.
Five different women said he forced them to touch him on the drive home.
He allegedly touched, kissed, and exposed himself to the women, with some claiming they were locked in the car.
Sampath Samaranayake is leaving the Brisbane District Court in Brisbane on Monday March 8th, 2021. Sampath Sandaruwan Samaranayake is on trial for allegedly pretending to be an Uber driver before allegedly sexually assaulting women. (AAP Image / Darren England) DO NOT ARCHIVE
Samaranayake denied the claims in Brisbane District Court and pleaded not guilty, including sexual assault and imprisonment.
He also denied trapping the women, saying the locking mechanism could not prevent passengers from disembarking.
“You could get out and go at any time,” he told the jury.
The father of two took a stand on Wednesday, admitting that Uber had turned down his application because his 2007 Land Rover was deemed too old.
The full-time chef said he was under financial pressure and needed a second job to have the skin wrinkled removed when he launched his own ridesharing program.
He searched the nightclub district for passengers waiting for Uber drivers and offered to take them home for a cash fee.
Samaranayake would talk about his weight loss and how conscious he remained of the 25 to 30 kilograms of skin folds on his body.
Samaranayake denied the claims in Brisbane District Court and pleaded not guilty, including sexual assault and imprisonment. Source: aap / file
He claimed the women liked to chat and that his alleged victims tried to touch him to comfort him.
“(One woman) was aggressive and said to me, ‘I understand your situation, no problem. I can help you,'” he said.
“When I pull up my shirt, she can’t even see … my stomach is not like a normal stomach.
“I had to grab my stomach with both hands (so she could touch it),” he told the jury.
In conclusion, prosecutor Sandra Cupina said it was unlikely that five different women would offer “sympathy” sex to a complete stranger and the jury should reject his evidence.
The story goes on
“It is implausible that they would touch his body in any way if he didn’t force them,” she said.
Defense attorney Peter Nolan said his client had behavioral issues.
“He’s obviously had problems that led him to act in ways that you might find something strange or bizarre, but that doesn’t mean he’s a criminal,” said Nolan.
Judge Tony Moynihan summed up the case before the jury retired on Wednesday afternoon.
Do you have a story tip? E-mail: email@example.com
You can also follow us Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and download the Yahoo News app from the Appstore or Google play.