London

Television actor rape trial jury retires

A jury in the trial of a teenage actor accused of raping a 14-year-old boy has retired to consider its verdict.

The actor, who cannot be named because he is under 18, is said to have forced himself on the complainant in a theatre's internal fire escape.

He denies one count of oral rape in July 2010 and three counts of sexual assault between July and September of the same year.

Judge John Hillen told jurors not to think of the case in terms of morality.

Addressing the jury he said: "It is for you to decide whether, in the matters you are concerned with, he was behaving out of character.

"Whether you regard what went on as normal and acceptable in the behaviour of teenagers in the 21st Century, or whether you consider it to be indicative of a sad, sexualised lifestyle, is wholly irrelevant."

The jury of seven men and five women was sent home shortly before 16:30 GMT and will resume deliberations on Monday.

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