Fresh sex scandal hits Australian military

AFP News
Australian military has been stung in recent years by a allegations of abusive and sexist behaviour in its ranks
This file illustration photo shows a parade rehearsal at the Royal Military College at Duntroon in Canberra, in 2011. A 23-year-old army cadet has been charged over an alleged 'rape incident' in the grounds of the college

The head of Australia's prestigious military training college in Canberra on Saturday described the alleged rape of a civilian woman by a cadet as "completely abhorrent".

A 23-year-old army cadet has been charged over the incident in the grounds of the Royal Military College at Duntroon on Thursday.

College commandant Brigadier David Luhrs said he had zero tolerance for such behaviour.

"Without making any judgement in this case, I can't be any clearer when I say that the behaviour that is alleged to have taken place in this circumstance is completely abhorrent to me personally," he said.

"And (it) is entirely at odds with the values and the standards of behaviour that I demand here at the Royal Military College, and more importantly that the army demands of its future leaders."

The case is the latest scandal to hit the Australian Defence Force, which has been stung in recent years by a string of allegations of abusive and sexist behaviour in its ranks.

They include the high-profile case of a teenage female cadet who went to the media last year after she had sex with a fellow defence academy classmate who allegedly broadcast the encounter on Skype so his friends could watch.

That incident prompted a string of reviews into defence culture which found that while progress had been made, there were still areas of weakness and more work was needed.