Emmerdale star Ben Freeman has attended a court hearing in Barbados after being charged with rape.

Five people testified during the preliminary hearing in the case against the British soap star.

Ben, who plays mechanic Scott Windsor in the soap, is accused of raping a British woman while on holiday in Barbados.

The prosecution witnesses included police officers and staff at the resort on the Caribbean island where the alleged rape took place on November 29, 2006, said police spokesman Barry Hunte.

The hearing will continue on March 23, when the prosecution is expected to call more witnesses.

Police said a British woman accused the actor of sexually assaulting her while he was on holiday at the Almond Beach Village resort on the northern coast of Barbados.

The preliminary hearing is held to determine if there is enough evidence to go to trial. It is not clear when it will finish.

Freeman, who attended yesterday’s hearing in Bridgetown, didn’t enter a plea and is not required to do so, Hunte said.

Chief Magistrate Clyde Nicholls didn’t impose any restrictions on the actor’s travel.