Shorten cleared of Portarlington rape claims

RAPE CLAIM DISMISSED: Federal opposition leader Bill Shorten

RAPE allegations against federal opposition leader Bill Shorten dismissed by police were laid after a Young Labor Party at Portarlington in the 1980s.

The claim, reported late last year, involved a teenage girl, now a community nurse who lives on the New South Wales central coast.

The woman had posted complaints to Facebook and spoke also with The Australian newspaper. Media reports at the time cited only a “senior ALP figure” although blogs such as “Kangaroo Court of Australia”  openly named Mr Shorten and claimed he was interviewed by police earlier this year.

The woman was reported as saying in an online post: “In 1985 I joined the ALP. In 86, at the age of 16, I … became a delegate for state and national conferences.

“In ’86 I went to a Young Labor camp down near Geelong … I was alone.

“At about 4am there was a knock at my door. It was him at the door. He pushed me into a bathroom, up against a towel rail, pulled down my pants and raped me.”

She said she was drunk at the time the alleged assault took place, and was currently taking painkilling medication that affected her short-term memory, although she said her memory of the alleged incident itself was clear.

Mr Shorten said that after a 10 month investigation, there was “absolutely no basis to the claims”.

A Victoria Police statement confirmed the investigation was over, stating that “investigating police sought advice from the Office of Public Prosecutions, which advised there was no reasonable prospect of conviction.

“All parties have been notified that Victoria Police will not be proceeding with criminal charges.”