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Rape case brought against footballers was 'convincing'

David Goodwillie and David Robertson's appeal should be refused, judges told.

Court: Goodwillie, left, and Robertson lodged an appeal at the Court of Session.
Court: Goodwillie, left, and Robertson lodged an appeal at the Court of Session. STV

Two footballers who were ruled to be rapists in a civil case should have their appeal against the decision refused, judges have been told.

The lawyer acting for the woman who accused former Scotland striker David Goodwillie and his ex-Dundee United teammate David Robertson said she had brought a "clear, cogent, persuasive and convincing" case against them.

Judge Lord Armstrong ruled Denise Clair had proved Goodwillie, 28, and Robertson, 31, raped her at a flat in Armadale, West Lothian, in January 2011.

Ms Clair, 30, was awarded £100,000 in damages after a hearing earlier this year.

Both players said the sexual activity was consensual and have appealed the ruling at the Court of Session in Edinburgh.

'In my submission there was a clear, cogent, persuasive and convincing case on behalf of the pursuer.'
Simon Di Rollo QC

Ms Clair's lawyer Simon Di Rollo said on Wednesday that Lord Armstrong had been aware of the need to approach the matter carefully in determining the issues on the civil standard of proof.

He said the case had featured detailed witness evidence from sober and independent witnesses, CCTV footage, scientific evidence on blood alcohol counts and expert evidence on the consequences of that information.

He said: "In my submission there was a clear, cogent, persuasive and convincing case on behalf of the pursuer."

Goodwillie and Robertson contend Lord Armstrong was mistaken in his treatment of a witness, Clifford Wilson.

Mr Wilson was an upstairs neighbour at the flat and gave evidence during the hearing last year.

The witness said said he had heard giggling and laughing and what sounded like "normal sex" from the downstairs flat.

Lord Armstrong said his testimony was "sufficiently confused that little reliance ought to be placed on it".

Mr Di Rollo argued the judge's assessment of Mr Wilson's evidence was "reasonable."

He said: "He has gone into this matter in significant detail and justified his decision making at every point."

Lady Dorrian, who is hearing the appeal with Lady Clark and Lord Malcolm, said they would issue their ruling at a later date.

Goodwillie now plays for Clyde, while Robertson retired from football in January.

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