By Rachel Quigley
Last updated at 3:55 PM on 24th January 2012
A member of the Saudi Royal Family entourage has been accused of luring two young women back to his room at the Plaza Hotel and raping one of them.
Canadian businessman Mustapha Ouanes, 60, who works both for a construction company and the unnamed prince, appeared in court yesterday on charges of first-degree rape, two counts of criminal sexual acts in the first degree, one count of sexual abuse in the first degree, and other charges related to an incident in January 2010.
The court heard that Ouanes met two young bartenders in a bar in Manhattan. He offered to pay for their drinks and then invited them along to another bar for some champagne.
According to the New York Times, because of his apparent age and dapper dress, the young women were not scared.
The prosecutor said yesterday in court: ‘In his bowler hat and scarf, he appeared to be relatively harmless.’
‘She woke up to this defendant on top of her kissing her mouth. She was unable to get him off, instead she passed back out again’
In the second bar, the alleged rape victim went off with some friends at one stage to smoke some hashish before returning to Ouanes.
It is then alleged he asked the women to come back to the Plaza Hotel where he was staying and have breakfast.
When they got to the hotel, the women are then said to have passed out on Ouanes’ bed in his room and when they woke up, he was having sex with one of them.
Assistant District Attorney Samuel David said in his opening arguments at the Manhattan trial: ‘She woke up to this defendant on top of her kissing her mouth. She was unable to get him off, instead she passed back out again.
‘When the woman, then 26, woke up a second time, he was having sex with her.’
According to the Times, the woman fought to free herself and eventually broke a glass which she intended to use as a weapon to defend herself.
Her friend, who allegedly woke to find her leggings had been pulled down, called hotel security.
Mr David told the court that when the police arrived, they found the two women huddled in the bathroom ‘so frantic and devastated’, they could hardly speak.
Ouanes paints a very different version of events and his lawyers argued the sex was consensual and that the businessman – who has never been arrested before – was set up.
Algerian-born Ouanes said the women invented the rape allegation after he declined to pay for sex.
His lawyer, Frederica L. Miller, told jurors in State Supreme Court in Manhattan: ‘Their story is driven by anger and greed at Mustapha Ouanes for something he did not do.’
The alleged rape victim took the stand briefly on Monday to identify the man she accuses of attacking her.
‘He’s wearing a red tie,’ the 28-year-old Brooklyn bartender said, dissolving into tears as she pointed at Moustapha Ouanes.
The trial had to stop for a few minutes while she contained herself.
Ouanes, who spends half of his working time assisting a Saudi prince including traveling with him, has been married for 40 years. His wife was at court yesterday.
If convicted, he faces 25 years in prison.