A Rotorua cross-dresser has been jailed for raping a woman who took part in bondage sessions with him.

Gordon Murray Waite, 42, was convicted by a jury in June of raping the woman in her home in March last year. He had jumped out of her wardrobe wearing only a women's G-string and raped her as she was preparing for bed.

Judge Robert Wolff sentenced Waite to seven years' jail when he appeared for sentencing in the Rotorua District Court.

Waite had a fetish for cross-dressing and the woman had helped him dress in women's clothing at least twice before the rape.


Crown Prosecutor Chris Macklin said there was an element of broken trust and Waite faced intellectual challenges. The woman had taken part in the cross-dressing but had not consented to sexual activity between them.

"There was a mistaken belief in consent ... crossed wires," Mr Macklin said. The incident had brought other abuse to the surface but the woman just wanted to move on with her life.

In his submissions Waite's lawyer Andy Schulze confirmed Waite suffered intellectual difficulties and said he had also had a "tragic" upbringing.

The victim had put Waite in the wardrobe and then forgotten after playing on the computer, Mr Schulze said.

"It is quite clear the victim and Mr Waite were at crossed purposes ... this was opportunistic offending," he said.

Judge Wolff said while Waite had developed a friendship with the woman, helping her around the home and with her part-time job, the night of the rape he took advantage of her.

"She was scared ... the genesis was crossed wires which later resulted in the tragedy that befell upon her," he said. "You did not receive the message to proceed and had intentionally gone on without her consent. No reasonable person in the circumstances would have believed they had consent.

"A message needs to be sent to the community that sexual behaviour of this type will not be tolerated ... You were aware," the judge said.