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DNA evidence sees man on trial for 1991 Rotorua rape

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The accused, Chris Budgen now aged 49, is on trial for the alleged crime.

Warning: This article contains references to sexual offending.

The victim was on her way home in the early hours of 15 September 1991 when she was pulled into an alley way in the Rotorua CBD and raped. Samples of DNA from semen and blood were obtained from her clothing some 21 years. Running tests with the national DNA database, police compiled a list of 63 possible suspects, including a relative of Budgen’s. This eventually lead police to Budgen who had lived in New Zealand but moved to the UK in 1997.

Budgen agreed to provide a DNA sample which found some of the semen to be 4000 million times more likely to be his. Police also claim Budgen was in Rotorua that weekend playing rugby – a match programme showed he played in the curtain raiser for an NPC game on 14 September 1991.

Budgen has pleaded not guilty. In his defence he says he had consensual sex with a woman that evening, and never saw her again. The trial continues today.

This article is part of our News Shorts series where we summarise stories published in the legacy mainstream media, giving you the important details to save your time. You can read the full article here.

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