Woman sues Hillsong Church over indecent assault

Duncan Murray |

A woman is seeking damages from Hillsong Church, a college and man who indecently assaulted her.
A woman is seeking damages from Hillsong Church, a college and man who indecently assaulted her.

A woman claims Hillsong Church breached its duty of care following an indecent assault that left her with lasting psychiatric distress.

The woman is simultaneously suing the church, a college she attended at the time and the male perpetrator of the assault for damages, with a week-long hearing commencing in the Supreme Court in Sydney on Monday.

The man pleaded guilty to indecently assaulting the woman in 2016 and the matter was dealt with in the local court.

“The claim against the church relates to how it responded to the report, including managing the plaintiff’s welfare,” Hillsong lawyer Gillian Mahoney told the court.

,Angus Macinnis, lawyer for the man who committed the assault, said there is some dispute over the exact nature of what occurred and the extent of the impact on the woman.

He described the assault as “single, fleeting, spontaneous”, which he said would have bearing on the level of psychological injury incurred by the woman.

Mr Macinnis also told the court the woman’s initial account of the assault varied from later versions and was somewhat “less serious”.

The woman’s lawyer Kelvin Andrews told the court among witnesses in her case will be two people appearing via an audio visual link from Pennsylvania in the United States.

The hearing continues.

1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732)

National Sexual Abuse and Redress Support Service 1800 211 028

AAP