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Vic: Theophanous appears on rape charge

23 Jan 2009 10:56 AM

MELBOURNE, Jan 23 AAP - Senior Victorian MP Theo Theophanous has appeared in court to defend rape charges.

Theophanous walked into the court on Friday holding hands with his wife Rita who took a seat in the back of the court before moving to the front row where he sat with his lawyer.

It is alleged Theophanous raped a woman, who now lives in Greece, at Parliament House in 1998.

He resigned from his portfolio of Trade and Industry on Christmas Eve.

After waiting in court for about half an hour, Mr Theophanous' hearing lasted just one minute.

His next court appearance will be on March 27.

Theophanous denied any wrongdoing when he spoke to reporters in December.

"I do not intend to resign as a member of parliament as I am completely innocent of any wrongdoing," he said.