Sri Lankan international cricketer Danushka Gunathilakka who had been stuck in Australia since November 2022, accused of raping a woman he met on Tinder through the act of “stealthing” has been found NOT guilty by a Syndey court.

Stealthing is an offence when the man is accused of removing condom during sex without the knowledge and consent of his partner. It is regarded as sexual assault or rape.

After matching on Tinder, Danushka and the woman (who cannot be named for legal reasons), met for drinks at Opera Bar in November 2022, had pizza together and then caught a ferry to the woman’s eastern suburbs home in Sydney.

The woman later accused Danushka of rape.

Yesterday, Judge Sarah Huggett of Downing Street District Court, found Danushka Gunathilaka not guilty.

“The evidence establishes that there was no opportunity for the accused to remove the condom during intercourse because that intercourse was continuous,” the judge Huggett said in handing down the verdict.

“That (the woman) saw a used condom on the ground at some point after the act … is hardly surprising.”

Judge Huggett found the complainant woman to be an intelligent, calm and responsive witness who at times gave the impression she was “motivated by a desire to paint the cricketer in an unfavourable light”, the judge said.

“I find that the evidence regarding the complaint far from supports the complainant. Rather it undermines the reliability of her evidence,” she said.

Danushka’s legal team has indicated they plan to seek their legal costs of his successful defence.

The woman had accused Danushka  of various acts of aggression and violence such as slapping her buttocks, forcefully kissing her and bruising her lips and choking her during sex, which she claimed was non-consensual.

Initially the police had brought four charges against Danushka, who was arrested at the Hyatt Regency just hours before the Sri Lankan cricket team was due to fly out of the country.

Prosecutors later dropped three of those charges.

During the judge-alone trial, Danushka’s defence team attacked the woman’s credibility claiming her story had changed over time.

The court also heard evidence from two of the woman’s friends who described her as fragile and distraught the day after the cricketer attended her home.

In what is really shocking, the judge described the conduct of police in prosecuting Danushka Gunathilaka as “very concerning” and “far from satisfactory”.

The court heard the police officers may have omitted crucial details, thrown out notes and potentially contaminated witnesses.

Although he has been found not guilty, some people on the social media don not want to see him playing for Sri Lanka again.

Kanishka Roshan also wrote:

“You guys are clearly not understanding the situation. Yes he is found not guilty. But is it okay to wander the streets and hook up with girls on Tinder when you went there to play the world cup? He is not guilty of the rape charges. For him, Women > Cricket. So we dont want such.”

The matter will return to court on October 4.

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