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Man appears at Leeds Crown Court over violent city centre attack on woman

PIC: Tony Johnson
PIC: Tony Johnson

A MAN has facing charges over a violent sex attack on a woman in Leeds city centre has made his first appearance before the Crown court.

Samuel Fortes is charges with rape and causing grievous bodily harm with intent after a woman was left with serious facial injuries in the incident.

The 26-year-old Portuguese national appeared before Leeds Crown Court today via a videolink from Wakefield Prison.

Fortes, of Ironside Road, Gleadless, Sheffield, spoke only to confirm his name, date of birth, and nationality.

Neither of the charges were put to the defendant and no details of the alleged offences were outlined in court.

The case was adjourned until November 12 for a further hearing.

A provisional trial date was set for December 17.

No bail application was made and Fortes was told he will remain in custody until the next hearing.

West Yorkshire Police launched a major investigation following the incident at around 3am on Saturday, June 23.

It was described as an “horrific ordeal”, with the victim also left with facial injuries.

It happened near to the footbridge by Grace Street, close to the inner ring road.

The Homicide and Major Enquiry Team is leading an investigation.

After the incident, Detective Chief Inspector Jaz Khan said: “This was a horrific attack and although there has been an arrest, I am still appealing directly to anyone who saw anything suspicious at that time or that seemed out of place to get in contact.

“We have a team of specialist officers who are with the victim and her family, providing them support following this horrific ordeal.

“Incidents like this can cause concern amongst the community and we would like to reassure the public that we are increasing neighbourhood patrols in the area.

“Anyone with any information can also contact independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.”