A ex-Liberal advisor accused of raping Brittany Higgins was sacked for sneaking into a minister’s parliamentary office on false pretenses and not behaving with ‘integrity’, government sources have claimed.
Bombshell allegations about the security breach at Parliament House have emerged a week after Ms Higgins claimed she was assaulted by a male colleague inside their boss Defence Minister Linda Reynolds’ office in March 2019.
Government insiders have claimed the alleged breach wasn’t the first security issue flagged in relation to the male staffer at the time.
They claimed the advisor was already being closely monitored by the government after other serious offences occurred, The Australian reported.
Brittany Higgins (pictured) alleges she was raped by the staffer in a ministerial office in 2019
Insiders told the publication the man had no official work purpose to be in the minister’s office on the night of the alleged sexual assault, despite him claiming otherwise.
They also claim his employment was terminated before Senator Reynolds was made aware of the rape allegations.
The male staffer’s access pass for Parliament House was cancelled four days after the alleged rape, Prime Minister Scott Morrison confirmed on Tuesday.
He said the man’s employment was terminated due to a security breach.
‘That was the reason for it. As I understand it, it related to the entry into those premises,’ Mr Morrison said.
The Prime Minister’s office has declined to reveal the nature of the male staffer’s other alleged offences.
The security breach occurred in the office of Senator Linda Reynolds (pictured on Tuesday)
Senator Reynolds has come under heavy fire for her handling of the allegations and was admitted to a hospital in Canberra on Wednesday as a precaution for a ‘pre-existing medical condition’.
Another three women have since come forward to allege they were assaulted by the same man since Ms Higgins went public with her claims last Monday.
Ms Higgins is expected to make a formal complaint to Australian Federal Police on Wednesday.
The allegations have prompted former intern to share intimate details about her experiences with the man on a couch in the office of a Nationals senator at Parliament House in 2014.
While she says their encounters were consensual, she claims she felt ‘pressured’ to have sex with him on other occasions.
‘Nothing ‘rapey’ happened. But that makes me feel really ill. I feel like he wanted to [take me there] because he wanted to show off his power. He was obviously much more important than I was,’ the woman told news.com.au.
‘There was one time I kept saying, ‘No, I am really tired, I don’t want to do anything’ and he kept being like, ‘Oh, come on. Come on.’
The former Liberal Party staffer accused of raping Brittany Higgins was sacked for a security breach at Parliament House (pictured) in 2019
She also shared Facebook messages which refer to the couch in the senator’s office, which the man insists is ‘comfortable’ as he invited her there.
‘The lounge in his office is really comfy, good for doing readings. haha,’ he wrote.
The woman replied: ‘mmm, depends, do you tend to talk a lot whilst studying?’
The man adds he’s usually ‘a good boy’ and has an essay to write.
She claims the encounter occurred five years before the staffer allegedly raped Ms Higgins.
The woman was a university student at the time and interning for a Labor MP.
The former intern shared an exchange of Facebook messages from 2014, where the man claims the couch in the senator’s office is ‘really comfy’
The man, whom she described as ‘ambitious’ with dreams of becoming Prime Minister, was also an intern at the time for a Nationals MP.
She first met him at drinks where she got ‘very drunk’ and went back to his house.
‘We kissed that night. I was very drunk and he was totally sober,’ the woman recalled.
‘I never felt weird about that but there were other instances where he definitely pressured me. We never had proper sex.’
The woman says she will come forward to police to make a statement if it helps with their inquiries.
The latest allegations comes a day after Ms Higgins’ boyfriend said he has ‘no regrets’ about quitting his job and standing by his partner amid allegations that she was raped in Parliament House.
David Sharaz, who worked in Canberra dealing with federal government clients, said his bosses gave him time off to support her but realised he could not keep his job.
Brittany Higgins (pictured) went public last week with the allegation she was raped by a male colleague inside Defence Minister Linda Reynolds’ office in 2019