A city centre pub landlord is on trial accused of a rape and three sexual assaults against a young woman who was drunk on his premises.

Benjamin Richard Iles, 31, licensee of The Marlbororough Arms in St John Street, Chester, has pleaded not guilty to all four charges alleged to have taken place on August 27, 2012.

Prosecutor Nicola Daley, opening the case at Liverpool Crown Court, claimed the  21-year-old alleged victim was too drunk to have consented to sexual activity.

Ms Daley said Iles, of Abbey Square, Chester, admitted  having sex with the woman from the outset but told  police she had instigated it and was fully consenting.

Benjamin Richard Iles, landlord of the Marlbororough Arms in St John St Chester
Benjamin Richard Iles, landlord of the Marlbororough Arms in St John St Chester
 

But she said: “At the time this occurred she didn't  consent to it. Put simply, the prosecution say that she  was so drunk that she was not in a position to be able to  consent to it and the prosecution say this was obvious  to the defendant.

“The prosecution say he must have known that she  wasn’t consenting because  whilst he was not that  drunk, it was plain to see that she was.

“In terms, the prosecution say he took advantage of her,  sexually assaulted her and raped her.”

Ms Daley said the only reason the detail about the  sexual contact was known was because the defendant had told police. The alleged  victim couldn’t remember.

The court heard the accused and accuser had  known each other for about  a year.

She had worked in a city centre bar and immediately before the alleged incident had been on her ‘leaving do’  as she prepared to go off to  university.

After drinking ‘quite a lot’  at her old workplace, where she recalled dancing on the tables, she moved on to The Marlbororough and drank some more.

CCTV footage showed her ‘falling over, a bit like a rag  doll’, said Ms Daley.

At about 7am the next day, the alleged victim was  helped into a taxi by the  defendant and a friend. Both  went with her to the friend's  house.

Ms Daley said: “She recalls waking up in the  morning, having some  vague recollection at some  point of feeling somebody  heavy on top of her. She says  she's realised, because of  how she felt, that somebody  must have had sex with  her.”

Police were called and saw  her at 11.55am that day. Officers said she still appeared  ‘very drunk’ and had her  speech was slurred.

Tests revealed the alcohol  in her blood was more than three times the legal  drink-drive limit and some  cocaine was detected.

When interviewed by police, Ms Daley said the defendant told officers the woman had been able to take herself to her friend’s bed.  He had got into the bed with  her. She put her leg over the top of his and they started kissing.

“At some stage thereafter she said ‘let’s do it’,” said Ms  Daley, in summarising Iles’  version of events.

Judge Andrew Hatton told  the jury of seven men and  five women that cases of this  nature ‘excite strong emotions’ but warned them to  remain ‘calm and objective  and dispassionate’.

The case continues.