Jack de Belin investigation top cop admits to lying to court

The officer in charge of the Jack de Belin sexual assault investigation has admitted that he previously lied to the court about accessing privileged communications between the NRL star and his lawyers.

Mr de Belin, 29, and Callan Sinclair, 23, are standing trial in the Wollongong District Court where they have pleaded not guilty to five counts of aggravated sexual assault.

The pair have claimed that the woman consented to sex in the North Wollongong townhouse in the early hours of December 9, 2018.

The court has heard that in late 2019, police obtained a search warrant for Mr de Belin’s home where they seized a number of electronic devices including the St George Illawarra forward’s mobile phone.

While downloading the contents of the phone, they came across a file titled “Craig lawyer” which was communication between Mr de Belin and his lawyer Craig Osborne.

Jack de Belin is standing trial in the Wollongong District Court where he has denied sexually assaulting a woman. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Simon Bullard.Source:News Corp Australia

The detective in charge of the case, Detective Senior Constable Shawn Adams, on Wednesday admitted to the court that he scrolled through 200 pages of material from the file.

Mr de Belin’s barrister David Campbell SC told the jury on Wednesday that on previous occasions during pre-trial legal proceedings earlier this year, that Sen Const had stated he believed that the material was not relevant to the case.

Mr Campbell read the transcript from the court proceedings on February 7 earlier this year, during which the detective was asked whether he was stating that the communication between Mr de Belin and Mr Osborne was related to his football.

“Yes,” Sen Cost Adams replied.

However, Mr Campbell read out a transcript from later in the proceedings when he was asked again whether he believed the communications were regarding “Dragons business”.

According to the court excerpt which was read to the court, it was put to Sen Cost Adams that the question was “answered by you falsely, wasn’t it?”

“Yes it was,” Sen Cost Adams replied at the time.

He was then asked: “It was answered by you knowingly falsely?”

“Yes,” Sen Cost Adams replied.

Giving evidence via audiovisual link to the District Court on Wednesday, Sen Const Adams admitted that he had lied on that occasion.

“The purport of what happened then is that you wilfully lied to the court,” Mr Campbell asked.

“Yes,” Sen Const Adams said.

Callan Sinclair arrives at Wollongong Court House. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Simon Bullard.Source:News Corp Australia

Sen Const Adams admitted that he did not inform his commanding officer or the Director of Public Prosecutions that he read the legally privileged material on Mr de Belin’ phone.

However, he denied that after reading the material, that it altered the course of his investigation and that he interviewed the complainant about the matter.

“Not at all,” Sen Const Adams said when asked if he had spoken to the woman – who cannot be named for legal reasons – about the content which he found on Mr de Belin’s phone.

The trial before Judge Andrew Haesler continues.

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