A former soldier accused of running a sex cult with six partners has launched a third bid to be released from jail – and he’s using their “BDSM relationship” as his defence.

James-Robert Davis appeared in court in Australia today as he filed his latest attempt to be let out despite being charged with 40 offences.

The former Australian Defence Force soldier is accused of being the leader of a sex cult called House of Cadifor, reports News.com.au.

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Davis originally faced three charges in New South Wales related to keeping a woman in sexual servitude, but they were later withdrawn and he was granted bail earlier this month.

But he was refused bail over a different set of charges in the same week, and it’s those charges that are being considered in his latest bail appeal to the state’s Supreme Court.

They relate to allegations made by four women and include assault causing ABH, intentionally distributing an intimate image without consent and intimidation.

Davis has been inside since he was nicked in March 2021.

The alleged cult that is said to have involved Davis and six polyamorous partners was based near Armidale in northern New South Wales.

In court today, his lawyer Abigail Bannister said many of the allegations occurred in the “context of a highly sexualised relationship in the BDSM and kink community”.

Ms Bannister also said that Davis had been unable to view all the necessary evidence due to “ongoing access issues”.

The court was told a documentary-maker had filmed Davis and his life at the property with his permission, and the defence wanted to use the videos as evidence in his case.

He has been under protective custody because of his former role as a prison guard, and he has been able to use the prison computer for only a few hours each week.

Davis had been unable to provide detailed instructions to his lawyers or properly assess the “vast” evidence in order to defend his case, the court was told.

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“The applicant is unable to properly and fairly prepare his defence for both hearings in February,” Ms Bannister said.

But prosecutors say Davis shouldn’t be granted bail because he is likely to do a runner.

And judge Mark Ierace said he did not “understand the relevance” of Davis needing to view 250 hours of footage” to defend himself against the “quite specific charges of assault”.

The judge said he’d give his ruling on the bail application tomorrow.

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