JLS STAR Oritse Williams has been found not guilty of raping a woman.
The 32-year-old boy band star, who first made his name on the X Factor, was accused of attacking a woman in a Wolverhampton hotel room in December 2016.
Williams denied the attack on the woman, who he met after performing at a nightclub earlier that night. He always maintained they had consensual sex.
His tour manager Jamien Nagadhana, 32, was also facing charges of sexual assault and assault by penetration.
Nagadhana was sleeping in the same room at the time of the alleged attack, though he admitted to touching the woman briefly to try and initiate a threesome, he denied any wrongdoing.
Both men have now been acquitted on all charges with a jury of eight women and four men deliberating for around two hours before unanimously finding Williams not guilty.
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Cleared..Not Guilty! Finally my brother @oritsemusic three years of hell is over! No-one will ever know or imagine what he’s been through..I’m just so proud of the way he conducted himself during what has been the most awful time..he is so strong and I know he can’t wait to start his life again now..We love you O ❤️
Speaking during the nine-day trial at Wolverhampton Crown Court, Williams explained how he met the woman and two friends at a nightclub meet-and-greet event.
He told jurors they got along “very, very well” and returned to his hotel room, where they engaged in consensual sex that ended abruptly when he was “unable to perform”.
Nagadhana told the court he tried to start the threesome because the unfolding situation seemed “cringey.” He explained that he then touched the woman in an intimate area but, when she failed to respond, went back to bed.
The woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, had previously told the court she lay "like a dead body" during sex, which she "didn't want to happen".
Defending Mr Williams, Mark Cotter QC, suggested the accusations were influenced by Nagadhana’s actions but insisted there was "no realistic answer as to why he [Mr Williams] would do it".
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This here is our brother, one of the kindest, most gentle, thoughtful men I know. Today he was cleared NOT guilty after 3 years of absolute hell. I’m so proud of how you have conducted yourself throughout this time, I really don’t think I could have held myself in the same way. Reesh we love you so much and I’m writing this crying so many happy tears, it’s over ❤️
Fellow JLS member Marvin Humes and his wife Rochelle Humes both took to Instagram to post messages of support to Williams following the verdict.
“I’m so proud of how you have conducted yourself throughout this time, I really don’t think I could have held myself in the same way,” Rochelle wrote.
“Reesh we love you so much and I’m writing this crying so many happy tears, it’s over.”
“He is so strong and I know he can’t wait to start his life again now,” Marvin added.
”We love you.”
A platinum-selling boyband with five UK number ones to their name, JLS also enjoyed success in Ireland, scoring 12 top 40 hits and four top 10 albums.