Hungry homeless man fined for dumpster dive
A HUNGRY homeless man who took food out of a skip bin behind a Launceston business has been convicted and fined $250 for trespassing.
Harry Kourakis, of no fixed address, appeared in Launceston Magistrates Court on Wednesday and pleaded guilty to the charge.
Kourakis yesterday told Magistrate Simon Brown he had just been released from prison at the time of the offence on May 25 last year and was hungry and "in a pretty bad way".
He said the business would throw out pies and iced coffees into a skip bin and he did not know he was doing something wrong by taking them.
A man called out from the public gallery saying "if you're hungry, you're hungry", and was asked to be quiet.
Magistrate Simon Brown said Kourakis' moral culpability was low and his ability to pay a fine was modest.
He offered Kourakis the chance to do community work, which he estimated would be about 21 hours, instead of paying a fine.
Kourakis said the work might interfere with his hope of securing employment.
Magistrate convicted Kourakis and fined him $250.