Jury discharged in Sydney chiro trial

Jury discharged in Sydney chiro trial

National News
The jury in the trial of Riaz Behi has been discharged after being unable to reach a verdict.

The jury in the trial of Riaz Behi has been discharged after being unable to reach a verdict.

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A jury has been unable to reach any verdicts on allegations that a chiropractor sexually abused a Japanese woman in a Sydney clinic. Riaz Behi, 45, pleaded no...

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A jury has been unable to reach any verdicts on allegations that a chiropractor sexually abused a Japanese woman in a Sydney clinic.

Riaz Behi, 45, pleaded not guilty to five counts of aggravated sexual assault and eight counts of aggravated sexual touching of the woman in the treatment rooms of The Back Guys practice in Sydney's CBD.

After hearing evidence over more than five weeks and deliberating for two full days, the Sydney District Court jury on Thursday were discharged.

They were unable to reach a verdict or a majority verdict.

The case will be next mentioned in the same court on May 6, when a retrial may be listed.

Behi's bail was continued to that date.

The trial had heard that over the course of 17 appointments in early 2019, the practitioner allegedly progressed from massaging the woman's buttocks to brushing his hands by her genitals and eventually to oral sex.

The woman, who was on a tourist visa and gave evidence through an interpreter, said she and Behi had communicated mostly through hand signals and Google Translate.

She said Behi used the app to apologise to her in an appointment in February 2019 when he touched her anus and vagina.

The woman said "yes, yes, yes" when Behi asked if she wanted him to stop.

Behi then told the woman had humiliated himself and he had never done something like that in a long career, the woman said.

But the practitioner gave evidence "none of that occurred".

He said in the woman's 10th appointment, she directed his hand over her covered genital area and giggled.

"I awkwardly laughed as well ... and then repeated, 'we shouldn't have done that'," he told the court.

Behi told the court he'd worked for more than 18 years as a chiropractor at different clinics, seeing up to 10,000 patients in his lifetime over 120,000 appointments.

He had never been reprimanded or had any issues arise from his work besides this case, the court heard.

Australian Associated Press

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