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High-Profile Rape Allegations at Parliament House: Former Colleague Testifies

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Geeta Pillai
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High-Profile Rape Allegations at Parliament House: Former Colleague Testifies

The high-profile rape allegations at Australia's Parliament House continue to command national attention as a former colleague of both the accused, Bruce Lehrmann, and the accuser, Brittany Higgins, has testified in Federal Court. The case, rife with implications for workplace safety and political culture, forms part of a broader legal process addressing the allegations raised by Brittany Higgins against Bruce Lehrmann.

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Unfolding Testimonies

Former Liberal staffer Nicky Hamer, testifying in Lehrmann's defamation trial, revealed her resignation from Linda Reynolds' office over Lehrmann's alleged behaviour. Hamer recounted that in early March 2019—mere weeks before the night Higgins alleges Lehrmann raped her—Lehrmann had expressed his interest in Higgins and even asked Hamer to invite Higgins to the pub for a drink.

Intense Courtroom Developments

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Liberal staffer Lauren Gain also gave evidence about socialising with Higgins and Lehrmann on the night leading up to the alleged rape inside Parliament House. Lehrmann, however, continues to deny the allegations, pleading not guilty to a charge of sexual intercourse without consent.

Heightened Emotions and Support

Brittany Higgins was seen breaking down in the arms of a close friend, Ben Dillaway, who flew to Canberra to support Higgins, suspecting she had been sexually assaulted. Nikola Anderson, a security guard on duty at around 1.30 am on March 23, 2019, testified to escorting Higgins and Lehrmann to Senator Reynolds' office.

The testimony from Hamer adds another layer to the complex legal battle, with the public and media closely monitoring the developments. The court's verdict will have significant implications, not just for Lehrmann and Higgins, but also for the institution of Parliament and its policies on staff protection and misconduct.

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