Serial public masturbator ‘craved the rush’

 

A thrill-seeking security guard terrorised Brisbane women for four years by masturbating naked or semi-naked in front of them on footpaths, at bus stops and in bushes.

Now he has been handed a six-month suspended prison sentence.

Benjamin Frederick Moran, 44, admitted to 33 indecent acts between January 2015 and January 2019.

Half or fully naked, he posed on footpaths, hid behind bushes or sat in his van and masturbated as women passed by or stood at bus stops on streets.

Most of the acts were committed on a nondescript suburban street opposite a Good Guys store in inner-city Windsor.

However, Moran also admitted carrying out lewd acts at Annerley.

Magistrate Belinda Merrin says Moran selected his two primary locations for their passing foot traffic and because he could conceal himself.

"On each occasion, you hid behind a tree or some sort of construction," she said on Tuesday.

"You waited, and then as an adult woman approached, who was by herself, you then removed yourself from the coverage and began masturbating."

Brisbane Magistrates Court heard Moran went to great lengths to avoid detection.

He often carried a change of clothes, removed signage for his business from his car and donned a hat and glasses when he committed the acts.

"One of the particularised incidents involved a woman who noted there was a mirror placed in a tree which would seem to allow you to see who was approaching the area in which you had concealed yourself," Ms Merrin said.

The court heard Moran felt compelled to seek the "rush" of pleasuring himself in front of women who randomly encountered him in public places.

 

Ben Moran on a Brisbane street. Picture: Google Maps
Ben Moran on a Brisbane street. Picture: Google Maps

 

There was no verbal or physical contact but many victims were frightened and anonymously called Crimestoppers.

A psychological report found Moran suffered compulsive exhibitionist disorder. He became aroused by the prospect of the women seeing him masturbate, not the prospect of contact with them, it said.

Moran was caught on January 16 after a woman called police after seeing him on Truro Street in Windsor.

Officers caught him near the location and he later confessed. He used a map to show officers the multiple locations where he had offended.

That led to 23 charges after they were able to cross-check previous reports of his behaviour and they later added a further 10 charges.

Ms Merrin sentenced Moran to six months in prison for each of the 23 charges, suspended for two years.

He was placed on probation for the other 10 charges.