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Naked jogger wins court appeal in New Zealand

Posted on Dec 04, 10:15AM | IANS

A high court in New Zealand has upheld the right to go jogging nude in a case involving a naked man who was arrested by police in a forest in the morning.

Andrew Lyall Pointon, 47, was wearing only a pair of shoes when he was spotted by a woman while running at 8.30 a.m. in a forest near Tauranga in August last year. She called police and he was arrested during another nude run, the Daily Mail reported.

Naturist Pointon said he enjoyed the freedom of not wearing clothes and began running naked about 18 months ago. He was charged with offensive behaviour and found guilty in Tauranga District Court last December.

The complainant, who was out walking her dog when she spotted Pointon, said she was so offended that she did not wish to ever return to the Oropi Bike Park.

His appeal was thrown out in June. But a second appeal has just been upheld by Justice Paul Heath in the High Court at Tauranga.

"If it was [offensive] then God wouldn't have given us genitals,"Pointon told a daily. "It is a win for all libertarians and a setback for all conservatives in the country."

The judge, Justice Heath, compared the situation to passing 'gang members' walking through the park.

He said: "It would not be surprising for a person in the position of the complainant to be concerned and discomforted by their presence, and even to feel threatened.

"However, on any view, their behaviour would not be regarded as offensive behaviour."