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Man who defaced George Michael mural in Australia ordered to pay $14,000

The mural was painted to pay homage to the Wham! frontman who died on Christmas Day 2016

2018-09-04

A man who vandalised a George Michael mural has been ordered to pay $14,000 AUS.

Ben Gittany, 24, defaced the mural of the LGBT icon – which sees him as a saint, holding a bottle of poppers, a joint and a crucifix earring - back in November last year, days after Australia legalised same-sex marriage.

The mural was painted by artist Scott Marsh in the inner-city of a Sydney home to pay homage to the Wham! frontman who tragically passed away on Christmas Day in 2016.

However, Gittany reportedly defaced the painting after seeing the picture of the Christian Lives Matter Facebook page and claimed he was “defending his religion”.

Once Gittany first defaced the painting, other protestors started to write Christian messages on the wall.

Gittany was found guilty of the crime in July and today (September 4), he was ordered to pay compensation to the owners of the mural and to serve 300 hours of community service.

Prosecutors had asked for a further $8,000 to graffiti-proof a re-painted version of the mural, but the judge said she could not order that as it was not strictly speaking damage compensation.