University of Canberra lecturer guilty of raping, indecently assaulting students
A former University of Canberra (UC) law lecturer has been found guilty of raping one student, and indecently assaulting others, under the pretence of plagiarism meetings.
Arthur Marshall Hoyle, 67, was found guilty by a Supreme Court jury of two counts of rape and six counts of indecent assault.
Hoyle was acquitted of two more charges, but was visibly distressed as the verdicts were delivered.
He held his head in his hands, slumped in his chair, and was also seen muttering to himself and shaking his head.
Justice Michael Elkaim told the court it was "difficult to imagine a more serious offence" besides murder.
Students came forward to claim Hoyle had arranged one on one meetings with them to discuss plagiarism concerns.
One student alleged Hoyle raped her, while another said he showed her pornographic images, including child pornography, during a Powerpoint presentation about the alleged academic misconduct.
In all, five women came forward with complaints about Hoyle, which included claims he inappropriately touched and tried to kiss them.
Hoyle 'took advantage' of students
Each of the meetings were set up after UC staff noticed an essay question from the curriculum posted to an essay purchasing site.
One student claimed Hoyle had shown her pornography, before touching her inappropriately, and said that when he raised the concerns about plagiarism he said "we can make this go away".
Hoyle maintained the porn sites appeared when the woman's assignment was tested for plagiarism, and he had shown her the presentation he was preparing to show his boss in making the case about students cheating.
Prosecutor Trent Hickey told the court Hoyle had exploited the students' concerns about failing and compromising their studies, as well as their vulnerability because of poor English language skills.
But Hoyle's lawyer, Liesl Chapman, argued the Crown's case was extremely unrealistic.
She said he had sound academic reasons to meet each of the women, to discuss plagiarism.
Hoyle's bail was revoked and a sentence hearing has been set for next month.