Imagine jumping into your shower at home, not knowing your naked self was being filmed by a hidden camera by someone you trusted.
University of Wollongong student Rico Auliputra concealed a camera inside a household sponge in his bathroom, hoping to record his three female house mates.
Today, the Indonesian national narrowly escaped jail time at Wollongong Local Court after pleading guilty to the offence.
The 26-year-old covered his face with a hoodie and satchel to avoid a waiting media scrum outside, as he ran to a getaway car.
Auliputra was living in a share-unit in Wollongong’s CBD, when his three female housemates discovered a green flashing light coming from a slit in a yellow sponge on the floor of their shower on October 28 last year.
On further inspection they found a cord from the set-up to a battery power pack, which was hidden in the vanity.
Auliputra confessed to the crime after being confronted by the group, who called Wollongong Police. But when officers arrived on scene, the SD card inside the camera had disappeared.
The defence lawyer today revealed that when the camera was discovered Auliputra threw the card from the seventh floor of his balcony, later returning to recover the card but was unsuccessful.
The IT student showed some remorse, telling his lawyer, “I regret what I did because I betrayed my friends. It’s hard now to be trusted because of the mistake I did.”
The Crown argued he should do time behind bars saying, “It is a serious offence and serious breach of trust.”
However, Magistrate Follent took into consideration his good character and guilty plea, sentencing him to 250 hours of community service.
In her closing statements to Auliputra she said, “What you did was reprehensible, abusing the significant trust of your friends. It was calculative and exploitative for your own gratification.”
Auliputra is to remain a student at the University of Wollongong for another year. Management has refused to comment on the incident today.