A jury has found former Block contestant Suzi Taylor (pictured) and her co-accused not guilty of all charges.
A jury has found former Block contestant Suzi Taylor (pictured) and her co-accused not guilty of all charges.

Jury deliver verdict in Suzi Taylor trial

A jury has found former Block star Suzi Taylor and her co-accused Ali Ebrahimi not guilty of all charges after an escort date went horribly wrong.

The pair were on trial in Brisbane District Court charged with extortion, deprivation of liberty, assault occasioning bodily harm, fraud and attempted fraud.

Both had pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Ms Taylor (real name Suellen Jan Taylor) and her co-accused Ali Ebrahimi were on trial on five charges each of extortion, deprivation of liberty, assault occasioning bodily harm, fraud and attempted fraud.
Ms Taylor (real name Suellen Jan Taylor) and her co-accused Ali Ebrahimi were on trial on five charges each of extortion, deprivation of liberty, assault occasioning bodily harm, fraud and attempted fraud.

 

On Thursday a jury deliberated for 9.5 hours before returning the verdict.

Ms Taylor, real name Suellen Jan Taylor, and Mr Ebrahimi were both found not guilty on all charges.

Throughout the trial it was alleged that David John Butler, attended Ms Taylor's New Farm apartment after contacting her through an escort service.

The prosecution had alleged that a dispute over payment led to Mr Ebrahimi tying up Mr Butler with a phone cord.

It was then alleged the pair punched and kicked Mr Butler, leaving him tied up for hours.

Ali Ebrahimi leaves the District Court in Brisbane. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Dan Peled
Ali Ebrahimi leaves the District Court in Brisbane. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Dan Peled

Mr Ebrahimi then used Mr Butler's bank card to withdraw $950 from an ATM, the prosecution alleged in court.

James Benjamin, acting for Ms Taylor, had argued Mr Butler's account of what happened that night could not be trusted due to inconsistencies in his evidence.

He pointed out Mr Butler had lied to the court while under oath during an earlier committal hearing.

Mr Ebrahimi, who represented himself for the remainder of the trial, had urged the jury to make their decision "thoughtfully".

Mr Butler gave evidence that he believed he would pay Ms Taylor $250 for half-an-hour of service after contacting her through the escort service.

He said Ms Taylor - who he knew as "Katie" - demanded he pay up before proceeding while the pair were in the bedroom.

The court was told Ms Taylor (pictured) was known to the alleged victim as ‘Katie’ and the ordeal allegedly arose after a dispute broke out between the pair concerning payment.
The court was told Ms Taylor (pictured) was known to the alleged victim as ‘Katie’ and the ordeal allegedly arose after a dispute broke out between the pair concerning payment.

He alleged he was restrained for so long and feeling so overwhelmed with fear he soiled his pants, with Mr Ebrahimi refusing to let him use the toilet.

During tense cross examinations, Mr Butler became shaky and emotional as he was grilled about inconsistencies in his evidence, including his previous contact with Ms Taylor over other dating apps.

Mr Benjamin suggested Mr Butler had consumed more alcohol than he originally disclosed and brought bottles of champagne and red wine with the intent to "charm" her.

Mr Butler denied suggestions he took a shower while at the apartment and refused to leave when asked by Ms Taylor.

Mr Benjamin suggested Mr Butler had lied to police because he was disappointed he did not receive sex that night, a suggestion he denied.

However, Mr Butler admitted to lying to police and while giving evidence at an earlier committal hearing about his previous interactions with Ms Taylor because he was "embarrassed and ashamed" of what transpired.

The verdict brings an end to the six day trial which was rocked by setbacks.

The first jury was discharged last Monday after Mr Ebrahimi's barrister, Peter Nolan, fell outside the court while crossing the road.

A new barrister, Yulia Chekirova, represented him when the trial restarted last Thursday.

However, Mr Ebrahimi decided to represent himself from Tuesday.

Ms Taylor is facing more trouble with the law over other unrelated offences and allegations she breached her bail multiple times.

In January, a warrant was issued by the Supreme Court after she failed to appear when her matter was listed.

The court was told she had been kicked out of her family home in Bundaberg, where she was required to reside under her bail conditions.

Despite managing to secure accommodation at a rehab centre, the court was told she had also been kicked out from there and could not be located.

A second warrant was issued by the Magistrates Court in Brisbane after she again failed to show up when several charges were listed for sentence.

Originally published as Verdict reached in Block star's trial



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