Wolf Creek star John Jarratt will plead not guilty to historic rape charges, his lawyer has confirmed.
On Tuesday morning, the ABC reported the 66-year-old’s solicitor Bryan Wrench appeared in the Downing Centre Local Court where he said his client John Jarratt would plead not guilty to a rape charge from the 1970s. According to the report, Jarratt did not appear in court, although expressed his desire for the trial date to be issued as quickly as possible so it could be dealt with.
According to the ABC, Wrench told the magistrate that Jarratt’s career “has been put on suspension pending this allegation”.
Allegations against the former Better Homes and Gardens first came to light in August, with the star forced to defend himself against claims that he raped a teenager in the ‘70s.
Jarratt’s accuser has alleged the assault occurred in a house she shared with Jarratt and his partner in the Sydney suburb of Randwick in 1976.
The actor angrily defended himself after the allegations came to life. Speaking to Nine News, he said he was a “good man” and called the accusations “ridiculous and untrue”.
“I’m fine because I’m innocent,” he said in August. “I’m good, because I’m a good man.”
He has described the investigation as a “nightmare”, telling the Sydney Morning Herald his “career is disintegrating.”
According to the publication, he not only offered to undertake a lie detector test, but also wants his court date moved forward, as his lawyer claims he could be facing another year’s wait for a trial to attempt to clear his name. If that’s the case, his lawyer claimed Jarratt’s career could be put on hold, stopping his income and forcing him to survive on the age pension.
Jarratt has been married four times and is currently in a relationship with Rosa Jarratt – also his first wife. He has six children.
He was previously married to actress Noni Hazlehurst and appeared alongside her on Better Homes and Gardens in the mid-late 1990s. He left the show when they divorced. The actor originally made his screen debut on The Great Macarthy in 1975. The same year he appeared in Picnic at Hanging Rock. In recent times he’s appeared in a number of TV shows and movies including Wolf Creek and McLeod’s Daughters.
The case will return to court next week.