A former JP Morgan banker accused of burrowing his head into a woman's breasts on a night out has defended himself by claiming it was all "a bit of fun".
Christaggelis Christoforou allegedly carried out the 'motorboating' attack in a bar in the City of London, before inviting the victim to slap him in the face, jurors at the Old Bailey were told. The 25-year-old is accused of having grabbed the woman's breasts in front of her colleagues on the night of 28 January this year in a Be At One bar in the City of London.
The woman in question told police Christoforou had been "offensive and vulgar" throughout the night. Following the complaint, however, the banker told officers the alleged victim had described her breasts as her "best asset".
Prosecutor Richard Hearnden told jurors that the former JP Morgan employee kept "constantly touching" the victim's breasts "by tapping them with his hand".
"She found this to be utterly unacceptable and told him so," he said. "He replied it was just a joke and he didn't mean anything by it."
He added Christoforou, who was reportedly drunk, categorically denied the attack. The alleged victim does not drink alcohol.
"He completely denied he had squeezed her breasts," Hearnden said. "He denied that he had burrowed his head actually into her chest, or 'motorboating' as he called it."
The banker, the prosecutor told the court, claimed "it was just a bit of fun".
Christoforou was captured on CCTV at approximately 8.20pm seemingly rubbing his face and head into the woman's breasts.
"This can clearly be seen on the video," said Hearnden. "She reacted by recoiling and pushing his head away. He responded by inviting her to slap him on the face and she obliged."
The alleged victim told the court she resorted to pushing Christoforou away after he attacked her.
"He leaned his head down and pushed his face between my breasts inside my top and moved his face around," she said.
"At that point, I pushed him away from me."
The court heard that three minutes later the defendant could be seen moving his arm towards the woman's breasts, while a man tried to restrain him gently.
"She reacted forcefully," said the prosecutor. "He must have thought the whole thing was funny because he appears to be laughing and he even reaches out to have another go. One can then see him making a third uninvited manoeuvre in less than 20 seconds."
Giles Newell, Christoforou's barrister, indicated his client had leaned forward and lowered his head as he had dropped his phone, but the alleged victim refuted the suggestion.
Jurors also heard the banker had reached out for the woman's breasts earlier in the evening.
"We were in a group and while we were talking, Chris reached out and touched my breasts," the alleged victim told the court.
"He did that a couple of times. I would described it as patting. I remember saying 'no' and being quite put out about it. I remember asking him to stop.
"I don't like that sort of attention or approach. He told me again I had no sense of humour, that it was just fun."
A male friend of the alleged victim told the banker that he "simply couldn't touch women that way", the court was told.
"She did not think it was amusing [and] she found it upsetting," Hearnden said of the alleged victim's reaction to the attack. "The fact it happened in front of work colleagues was a particular cause of upset and anxiety."
Christoforou denies one charge of sexual assault. The trial continues.