Rape-accused Sri Lankan cricketer Danushka Gunathilaka seen for first time since bail
Tuesday, November 22, 2022, 22:52 SL time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.
November 22, Colombo: A Sri Lankan cricketer accused of raping a Sydney woman he met on a dating app has been photographed for the first time since leaving custody on bail.
Danushka Gunathilaka was granted bail on Thursday in his second bid for freedom, which was backed by a surety of $150,000 provided by a “friend of a friend” and a further $50,000 to be paid by the cricketer , News.com.au reported.
The 31-year-old was pictured walking into Eastwood police station in Sydney’s north-west on Tuesday for his daily report status.
He was seen arriving in a blue Subaru WRX, wearing navy trousers and a white button-down Ralph-Lauren as he was accompanied by a follower.
It is the first time that Gunathilaka has been seen in public since his release. Police allege the international cricket star matched a woman on a dating app and chatted several times before meeting on November 2.
They had drinks in Sydney before returning to the woman’s home at around 11pm, police said.
Police allege Mr Gunathilaka ignored the woman’s pleas to “take it easy” and instead choked and assaulted the 29-year-old woman at her home.
The top-order batsman allegedly forced himself on top of the woman when the couple moved into the bedroom.
Police say the woman was uncomfortable and agreed to continue the sexual activity only if Mr Gunathilaka wore a condom.
The court heard the woman later found the condom on the floor next to the bed.
During his second bail hearing on Thursday, defense lawyer Murugan Thangaraj told the court that his client denied any violence.
“It’s a one-to-one case,” he said.
The court said the prosecution’s case was strong and “based on consent”, based on DNA, electronic and forensic evidence.
Magistrate Janet Wahlquist noted that Gunathilaka had no criminal record and determined there was nothing to indicate he would endanger the alleged victim.
She granted the cricketer bail with strict conditions, including a night curfew, daily police reports and an order to immediately surrender his passport.
Can only use one phone and is not allowed on dating apps or social media.
Gunathilaka cannot travel or have any contact with the alleged victim.
He has pleaded not guilty to the charges and is due back in court in January.
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