MasterChef judge George Calombaris has been fined $1,000 after he assaulted a man at the A-League grand final in Sydney earlier this year.
Calombaris pleaded guilty in August to assaulting a 19-year-old fan at May’s season decider between Melbourne Victory and Sydney FC at Allianz Stadium.
He was convicted of common assault and fined $1000 on Friday in Sydney’s Downing Centre local court.
The court heard the 39-year-old may have been provoked by insults shouted from the crowd after the grand final. Footage played by the prosecutor showed Calombaris waving his Victory scarf and pointing into the crowd before moving past police and security to confront a man.
The court had previously heard Calombaris, 38, called the victim a “big-mouth man” and a “dodgy cunt” before punching him in the abdomen.
Magistrate Peter Miszalski was unsympathetic to the chef, convicting him and admonishing his aggressive behaviour.
Miszalski admitted he was a long-time fan of MasterChef – particularly when participants caramelised onions. The magistrate’s remarks elicited a brief smile from Calombaris.
But Miszalski’s sympathetic tone ended when he admonished Calombaris’s aggressive reaction to the “yahoo” factor in the crowd.
Celebrity chef George Calombaris allegedly shoves fan after A-League grand final
“I suspect [media] labelled him a thug,” the magistrate said when informed the highly-publicised altercation resulted in Calombaris missing out on a $300,000 ambassadorship.
“It’s not as though somebody’s come up to him and got into his face and abused him, he’s made his way into the crowd and started to mouth off – in no uncertain words.
“You don’t get sucked into the drama. Once you do that, you’re gone.”
The magistrate said he wanted to send a message that high-profile people would not simply get a slap on the wrist.
“It was a very public display of aggression,” he told the Downing Centre local court. “I watched those programs many years ago and was very much a fan. To see a man like this come before the court is a tragedy.”
After pleading guilty the celebrity chef stood down from his role as Victory’s No1 ticket holder, excluded himself from A-League games for 12 months and expressed sorrow for the incident.
Calombaris was subdued as he left court on Friday quickly pushing past reporters before he climbed into a waiting car without making any comment.