Northern Ireland

Boy charged over Black Mountain rape

Police
Image caption A defence solicitor said his client insists any sexual contact was consensual

A 17-year-old boy accused of rape has been denied bail at a hearing in Belfast.

The teenager, who cannot be named because of his age, stands charged with four counts of rape and six counts of sexual assault against a woman or girl.

The alleged attack is said to have happened in the Black Mountain area of the city last Friday.

Police said the boy was also being investigated over a separate alleged rape in March.

He has not been charged over that incident, but inquiries are ongoing, the court was told.

Opposing his release, a detective claimed there was "an extremely similar modus operandi" between the two alleged attacks.

"There are a number of people who were present over the weekend when this took place that police have yet to speak to," she said.

During cross-examination the detective agreed that the accused fully cooperated with investigating officers.

A defence solicitor said his client insists any sexual contact was consensual.

The judge ordered the boy be held in custody to appear again by video-link on Friday.