Former NRL superstar Jarryd Hayne spoke outside court on Monday after he was convicted of sexual assault and told he faces an inevitable jail term.
“I’d rather go to jail knowing I spoke the truth rather than be a free man living a lie,” Hayne said.
A jury found Hayne raped a woman in her Newcastle home in 2018.
Hayne, 33, had denied assaulting the woman saying the incident in her bedroom had been consensual.
After nearly 18 hours of deliberations that began last Wednesday, the Sydney District Court jury found him not guilty of both counts of aggravated sexual intercourse without consent inflicting actual bodily harm.
But Hayne was found guilty of two alternative counts of sexual intercourse without consent.
Hayne remained motionless until the final verdict when he nodded a few times and looked at supporters in the public gallery.
Immediately convicting Hayne, Judge Helen Syme initially refused to release him on conditional bail given the “inevitable” jail term.
But bail was granted after the former footballer’s agent offered to put up $50,000 surety.
Hayne will also have to report daily to police, stay within his local government area except for specific matters and pay $20,000 if any condition is breached.
The verdicts come after a Newcastle jury in December was unable to return verdicts to the same charges.
The Crown had argued in both trials the former State of Origin player felt entitled to sex when he went to the then-26-year-old woman’s Newcastle home, having left his friends drinking at a bucks party and also missing watching his old teammates in the NRL grand final that evening.
The woman testified Hayne was “rough, forceful and inconsiderate,” despite her protests of “no” and “no Jarryd,” and pushed her face into the pillow before ripping her jeans off.
Hayne testified that the woman had become “filthy” after finding out a taxi was waiting for him outside her home and knew she did not want sex.
But he wanted to “please her” and the pair kissed before he commenced consensual oral and digital sex, he said.
“She said she didn’t want to have sex. We didn’t have sex,” Hayne said.
He rejected the suggestion the woman was retreating up the bed to get away from him, saying she helped him remove her pants.
The assault lasted for about 30 seconds before the woman started bleeding from her genitals.
The Crown argued Hayne had no reasonable grounds for believing the woman would have consented to any sexual activity that evening.
But Hayne’s barrister argued his client was content to “take it or leave it” and fully respected the woman’s wishes to not have sex after she found out about the taxi.
– with AAP’s Luke Costin