Bruce Lehrmann‘s trial is expected to last between four and six weeks. The trial, in the capital city of Canberra, is a cause célèbre in Australia. It has sparked nationwide outrage and prompted the former prime minister to apologize. The trial of the former government staffer, 66, has been scheduled for between four and six weeks.
Prosecutors have focused on two aspects of the case. The first is the level of intoxication, or lack of it. The prosecution argues that Mr. Lehrmann acted without the complainant’s consent, while the defence says he had no idea he was having sex with the complainant.
The second issue is the rape. Brittany Higgins, a former Liberal staffer, says Lehrmann raped her in the Australian parliament. Lehrmann denies the rape and has pleaded not guilty. The trial is expected to last up to six weeks and could call on high-profile witnesses.
The trial begins in the ACT Supreme Court on Tuesday. The jury comprises 16 members. Four of them are high-profile journalists, while two others are politicians. Among them are Samantha Maiden and Brittany Higgins. The jury members’ background is important in understanding the case.