Blade Silvano denies two counts of assault
A woman has been accused of posing as a man so she could have sex with another woman, a court heard. Blade Silvano, 40, is accused of using an unknown object during intercourse with her alleged victim. She is accused of a “sophisticated deception” in which she allegedly claimed to be an Army officer, sent pictures of herself “shaving” and never walked around naked.
The alleged victim told Cambridge Crown Court how Ms Silvano would discuss what cancer treatment “he” was having as part of an elaborate scheme.
Asked about intimacy between them, she said she had never seen “his” private parts, adding: “He would never allow me to go near his genital region.”
She had been expecting to attend an officers’ ball in December 2016 with Ms Silvano – who claimed to be a veteran – but this was called off when “he” told her “he” had been trampled by a cow, the court heard.
The woman told the jury that Ms Silvano had “sent me a picture of his leg elevated on a sofa at his house”.
“He said because it was the weekend they [doctors] couldn’t do anything further but he’d be going back to hospital to have a small operation to rectify what the cow had done.”
The jury was told Ms Silvano had never been in the Army.
The 40-year-old is met her alleged victim through an online dating site called Plenty of Fish where she described herself as a man looking for a woman, the court heard.
The court heard how the alleged victim only found out her true sex by chance on Facebook.
She told police in an interview: “She denied me the right to consent. Everyone has the right to know who they are having sex with and what they are having sex with.
“I consented to have sex with a male, not a female. I did not consent to have sex with a female who was penetrating me with something.”
Debra White, who was defending, suggested Ms Silvano had never been to the woman’s house and all communication had been via mobile devices.
She said: “Had you met in the flesh, you would have known that Blade Silvano was a woman.”
The woman accused Ms Silvano of using an unknown object during intercourse
The complainant replied: “That is incorrect. I’ve only known Blade as a man.”
The court heard how the woman eventually learned Ms Silvano had a partner. The court heard an angry WhatsApp message she had sent to the defendant after making the discovery.
It said: “You clearly have been leading me on and have some serious issues. I hope the woman in your life figures you out. I deserve to be someone’s only. My boys deserve better than this rubbish. You have messed up – getting someone to go wedding dress shopping, getting me to think you were seriously ill…
“All I wanted was a loyal, honest man. It’s obvious you like to play with hearts and minds. Clearly you have psychological issues to do this for two years.”
The woman said she was last in contact with Ms Silvano in October 2018 when she messaged to ask if her partner would stop “contacting my family”.
Asked if the person sitting in the dock had changed over the past six years, she told the court: “The person I knew six years ago had much shorter hair and more masculine clothing. Her breasts were not evident. They are now.”
Prosecutor Michael Hillman said they first met up in December 2016 and they kissed, before having sex at a subsequent meeting.
In her police interview, the woman added: “There was nothing unnatural whatsoever. He was very fluid when he moved. He wasn’t shy or timid. It did not feel like a woman next to me.”
Her partner’s chest “looked flat” and he “walked around in his T-shirt and boxers”, the court heard.
She added: “All the conversations we had, to pictures of him shaving and his stories – he always stated he was male.”
The defendant, who at the time was running a café in a Victorian town hall in Welshpool, Powys, denies two charges of assault by penetration.
She claims never to have met the complainant, insists her “gender had never come up in conversation” and denies using the surname Mendez.
The trial continues.