Hey Dad! star Robert Hughes charged with 11 child sex offences
Hey Dad! star Robert Hughes has been charged with 11 child sex offences dating back to the 1980s.
Mr Hughes appeared in court when his matter was briefly heard on Thursday afternoon. He did not enter a plea.
Police did not oppose bail and it was granted by the court on strict conditions, including $50,000 surety. He must also report to police three times a week, forfeit his passport and not go near an international departure point.
Former Hey Dad! actor Robert Hughes leaves Central Local Court having being granted bail. Photo: Wolter Peeters
The 64-year-old landed at Sydney Airport just before 7.30am on Thursday morning, flanked by NSW Police officers who had escorted him on Qantas flight QF2 from Heathrow.
He was taken to the Sydney Police Centre from the airport.
The former prime-time TV star consented to an order sought by the Attorney-General, Nicola Roxon, that he return to Sydney for questioning in relation to allegations that he assaulted five children between 1985 and 1990 while starring on the popular family television sitcom.
Facing charges ... Robert Hughes arrives at Surry Hills Police Centre. Photo: Wolter Peeters
Mr Hughes faces 11 accusations made by people who were aged seven to 15 years at the time of the alleged abuse, which coincided with the actor's starring role in Hey Dad!
Earlier, his lawyer, Greg Walsh, said his client was holding up as well as could be expected and was hoping to get bail and return home to his wife, celebrity agent Robyn Gardiner.
Mr Walsh said his client denied all charges and would be pleading not guilty.
"I think he's functioning well, he's very tired ... He's very stressed," Mr Walsh said. "The main anxiety he's got is his freedom and in particular being reunited with his wife.
"They have a very close and loving relationship, that's very obvious to me, I saw Robyn yesterday and she's very anxious."
Sex crimes commander Detective Superintendent John Kerlatec said Mr Hughes declined to be interviewed by detectives at Surry Hills Police station on Thursday morning.
"All the victims have been contacted. They are pleased with the progress to this stage," Detective Superintendent Kerlatec said.
"We still have a long way to go, we are focused on the victims and allowing them to have their say in court but also we must remember the accused has the right to defend these matters."
He said police did not expect to lay any further charges than the 11 in relation to these alleged victims. But he could not rule out the possibility there were other alleged victims.
Alleged victims include the daughter of family friends and friends of Mr Hughes's daughter, a London court was told during extradition proceedings.
Claims against Mr Hughes were first made public in 2010. He was living in London with his wife when arrested in August 2012 by police seeking his extradition.
Mr Hughes has been on bail since his arrest.
He played the central character Martin Kelly in the hit TV series.