The Brooklyn man accused of keeping a woman as a "sex slave" in his apartment appeared in court yesterday—and his lawyer claims their relationship was actually a consensual, "voluntary, mutually fulfilling" S&M relationship. John Hopkins, 45, who is facing rape, assault, and unlawful imprisonment charges, apparently told a grand jury that he had been corresponding with the 27-year-old Wisconsin woman for a year.

The incident was first reported earlier this week, when a 27-year-old Wisconsin woman was found by police in a Greenpoint apartment where handcuffs, a ball gag, and a whip were also seen. The woman told cops that she met Hopkins through Craigslist; Hopkins allegedly offered her a free room in exchange for cooking and cleaning, and he also paid for her to fly to JFK Airport. But when she arrived on February 4, the Post reported, "Hopkins allegedly told the woman that she was to be his slave. He then allegedly blindfolded and gagged her, handcuffed her to a radiator, and began beating and raping her."

The woman did admit she was allowed to leave the apartment for her job at a Manhattan restaurant during her imprisonment, but on February 12, she called her mother, saying she would kill herself because she didn't want to be locked up. Her mother called the police, who found the woman naked and trembling in bed.

Hopkins' attorney Andrew Stoll said the pair did not meet on Craiglist and, "All of the acts in question were consensual acts between two adults who freely agreed to every aspect of their relationship." He showed emails the woman allegedly sent to Hopkins, including one from during the alleged imprisonment, "i yearn to serve my Master better. can i cook for you tomarrow? i love you so much." Stoll said, “These accusations only arose when my client called the complainant’s mother, to tell her that her daughter needed some emotional help, and should probably go back home.”