Naked jogger Gabriel Romanos outside the Melbourne Magistrates' Court.
Naked jogger Gabriel Romanos outside the Melbourne Magistrates' Court.

Masturbating jogger makes bold claim

Gabriel Romanos waved his arms around outside court in protest against members of the media who tried to take his photograph.

The fully-clothed serial flasher and public masturbator, 52, took exception to the attention, despite being charged with offences that suggest he otherwise likes being looked at.

Romanos, who has 58 prior convictions for flashing and masturbating in public, is on the sex offenders register for 15 years.

He is facing at least 10 more charges stemming from a December 4 incident where police were called to King Street in the Melbourne CBD following reports of a naked man jogging.

Outside the Melbourne Magistrates' Court today, Romanos asked why anyone would want to take his photograph. When told the matter was in the public interest, he said "it's my interest".

He then excused his behaviour because of the early hour of the day it allegedly took place.

"If it's half past five in the morning, it doesn't matter," he told news.com.au.

Footage of Romanos and his supporters outside court, filmed by Herald Sun journalist Shannon Deery, shows Romanos taking a reporter's phone.

The court earlier heard Romanos had been "doing it since the age of 12".

 

Naked jogger Gabriel Romanos told news.com.au he should be allowed to run naked in the early hours of the morning. Picture: Rohan Smith
Naked jogger Gabriel Romanos told news.com.au he should be allowed to run naked in the early hours of the morning. Picture: Rohan Smith

Prosecutors told the court Romanos has "15 pages of priors for all that type of offending".

The magistrate and Romanos' defence counsel argued over whether the accused gets sexual arousal from jogging naked.

"He's walking around with an erect penis," the magistrate said. "I suppose you can draw an inference there - have a rough guess.

"Usually when a person's walking around with an erection, it's pretty obvious the inference, isn't it?"

The prosecution case is still being outlined and the court heard several of the charges will need to change to reflect recent changes in legislation.

There are multiple witnesses who still need to give statements, the court heard.

Dressed in a black jumper with a collar and blue jeans, Romanos was supported in court by his partner.

The Melton West man was convicted of indecent exposure after running through Balwyn wearing only his shoes in 2009. He said at the time that he doesn't know why he does it.

"(It) just happens," he said.

AAP reported that Romanos was given a nine-month intensive corrections order. Prior to that, he was jailed for his offending, but he did not stop.

He will next return to court on June 27.

rohan.smith1@news.com.au | @ro_smith