Hampshire & Isle of Wight

'Naked rambler' Stephen Gough fined for walking nude

Stephen Gough
Image caption Stephen Gough denied the charges of behaviour likely to cause harassment, alarm or distress

A man known as "the naked rambler" has been fined after being found guilty of nine public order offences for walking nude in public places.

Stephen Gough, 54, of Chamberlayne Road, Eastleigh pleaded not guilty to the charges of behaviour likely to cause harassment, alarm or distress.

District Judge Anthony Calloway said members of the public had been "distressed" at seeing Gough nude.

Payment of the £1,800 fine was waived in lieu of time served in custody.

District Judge Calloway said there were "elements of the defendant as an exhibitionist".

'Shocked and alarmed'

Gough was banned from entering Southampton Magistrates' Court after he refused to wear clothes for the trial.

Charles Nightingale, prosecuting, said in several of the offences Gough was seen by parents with young children who were "shocked and alarmed" at seeing him naked.

He said the offences, which occurred in February, took place in various locations in Hampshire including outside a primary school, on country footpaths, in Southampton city centre and at Basingstoke Magistrates' Court.

Tom Stevens, defending, said his client believed his nudity was allowed under Article 10 of the Human Rights Act which protects freedom of expression.

District Judge Calloway said: "The human body is not a shameful thing, it is about context."

Gough remains in custody as he awaits trial for a further charge of an alleged breach of an anti-social behaviour order banning him from being naked in public.

He is due to appear at Southampton Crown Court on 19 June.

Gough gained notoriety in 2003 and 2005 when he walked naked from Land's End to John O'Groats and was the subject of a TV documentary.

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