YORK, England — A staff sergeant stationed at RAF Menwith Hill who is on trial for multiple rape charges, along with other charges, pleaded not guilty on all counts.

Staff Sgt. James Gardner, 34, has pleaded not guilty to five counts of rape, four of which involve underage girls; one count of attempted rape; five counts of sexual activity with a female under 16; two counts of sexual assault by penetration; and one count of assault causing bodily harm, said Emma Popham, a York Crown Court official.

The alleged incidents are believed to have taken place between December 2004 and August 2005, but that was not confirmed by Popham on Thursday. She did not know the ages of the girls at the time of the alleged incidents.

Popham said that the trial could continue into next week.

Officials at RAF Menwith Hill refused to answer questions regarding Gardner, or release any further information about the airman. RAF Squadron Leader Ian Garnett, a top British official at the base, delivered a messge through his assistant referring all queries to local news reports.

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