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Prosecutor confirms Bruce Lehrmann to face retrial over alleged Brittany Higgins rape

Former Liberal Party staffer Bruce Lehrmann will face a retrial early next year over the alleged rape of Brittany Higgins, the ACT Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) confirmed Monday.

The first trial was aborted last week after an allegation a juror conducted their own research into the case, against the strict instructions of the presiding judge.

Mr Lehrmann pleaded not guilty to the charge of sexual assault in the ACT Supreme Court earlier this month over the alleged incident at Parliament House in 2019. He denies that any sexual activity occurred.

After 12 days of hearings and more than five days of jury deliberations,  Chief Justice Lucy McCallum discharged the jurors after discovering that one of them had engaged in misconduct.

Despite Justice McCallum issuing 17 warnings to jurors against conducting research, academic documents pertaining to aspects of the case was discovered by court sheriffs in the jury room after deliberations.

The court had set a retrial date of February 20, 2023, pending the prosecution’s decision to proceed.

Mr Drumgold, who prosecuted Mr Lehrmann during the initial hearings, has now confirmed he will pursue a retrial.

Mr Lehrmann and Ms Higgins were colleagues working for then cabinet minister Linda Reynolds in March 2019, when the alleged assault took place.

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