Odey’s Alleged Victim Calls Assault a ‘Scramble of Hands’
(Bloomberg) -- The banker who accused Crispin Odey of assault told a London court that the hedge fund manager was a “scramble of hands” as she described the alleged incident that occurred more than 20 years ago.
The woman, who was in her mid-20s in the summer of 1998 when she went to Odey’s London home, was often in tears as she responded to questions Thursday. The alleged attack in the kitchen was swift, she said.
“He was next to me and so it was sort of a like an octopussy type maneuver,” the woman, who isn’t being identified for legal reasons, said. “And then it’s a scramble of hands. It’s like a groping event is the only way to describe it.”
Odey denies the charge and had pushed to have the case heard by a magistrate rather than be tried by a jury. The trial is set to resume on March 11 after the judge rejected Odey’s bid to have it thrown out early over inconsistencies in the woman’s testimony.
“That much is to be expected when the incident goes back over 20 years,” the judge said. “This case does call for an answer and must proceed.”
The trial comes after a humbling year for the 62-year-old, who’s seen a 30% decline in his fund and his name dropped from some of the funds managed at his eponymous firm.
Odey has said that he was attracted to the woman and suggested to her that they may end up in bed together but insisted he never touched her. He is charged with a count of indecent assault.
Prosecutors read out parts of Odey’s interview with police in 2019. In it, he said allegations by the woman that he showered and approached her in dressing gown were “rubbish.”
“I don’t think I did anything wrong and I still don’t,” he said in the police interview.
The woman, who worked as a junior salesperson at an investment bank that had Odey as a client, had told the police that she was left frightened whether he might pursue her after she struggled free.
“I just stopped meeting clients if I could avoid it because there just seemed to be no boundaries,” she said.
Odey’s lawyer, Crispin Aylett, had told the woman during her testimony that “I suggest that you’ve got an overactive imagination.”
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