"Jedi Council" ringleader Hastings Fredrickson has pleaded guilty to three charges. Photo: Graham Tidy
The ringleader of the Defence Force’s ‘‘knights of the Jedi Council’’ has pleaded guilty to three of six charges related to using a carriage service to cause offence.
Former army staffer Hastings Fredrickson was part of a group of up to 17 men who circulated videos and photos of naked, unsuspecting women and sometimes challenged fellow members of the council to try to bed them too.
Fredrickson, who was a civilian contractor with defence giant Thales in Canberra at the time of the offences, pleaded guilty in the Downing Centre Local Court on Tuesday to three charges of using a carriage service in a ‘‘menacing, harassing or offensive’’ manner on three days in July, 2010, between 12.55am and 2.20am.
Three charges, relating to alleged offences between May and June 2010, were dismissed.
Fredrickson will be sentenced in the District Court later this month.
The army sacked six soldiers alleged to be at the centre of the ring last year*.
The emails allegedly included details about the size and shape of the women’s breasts and a rating of the sexual experience.
Often the material was sent using Australian Defence Force email systems.
It is understood the women were filmed or photographed without their knowledge.
Fairfax Media revealed details and the name of the ‘‘Jedi Council’’ in June this year after Chief of Army Lieutenant-General Morrison announced three ringleaders had been stood down.
Correction: An earlier version said Hastings Fredrickson was a former commando. He served as a support staff member within the Special Operations Command but did not qualify as a commando. It also incorrectly indicated that Mr Frederickson resigned from the army reserve in July 2014 - the army terminated his service in September 2013.