A Canberra fugitive who failed to pay a prostitute for sex has been granted bail so he can fight rape charges.
Akis Emmanouel Livas, 50, originally pleaded guilty to sexual intercourse without consent after he left the woman with a white card bearing a printed red rose instead of the agreed $850 for sexual services.
But, on Wednesday, he told the ACT Supreme Court he intended to withdraw his plea and dispute the allegations.
A court has previously heard Livas first had intercourse with the self-employed sex worker in October 2010.
But he was $50 short of the agreed $250 fee, and promised to deliver it later.
The pair then agreed on another appointment where the defendant would be charged $800 and also pay the outstanding $50.
Livas produced an envelope upon arrival, but resisted when the sex worker asked to see the contents to make sure the money was inside.
He told the woman she had to trust him, as it was part of his fantasy, and the pair had sex.
She later opened the envelope to find a folded paper bag and a white card bearing a printed red rose.
Livas then left the premises, leaving a manila folder containing personal documents, which the woman said she would return to him when he paid the $850.
She called the Sex Workers Outreach Program and then reported the incident to the police.
Livas was arrested, pleaded guilty and was committed to the ACT Supreme Court for sentence in 2010.
But he then went on the run for two-and-a-half years until he was recaptured by police in his mother's Pearce home earlier this month.
The prosecution opposed Livas bail application before Master David Mossop on Wednesday, arguing he was a flight risk.
But defence lawyer Paul Edmonds said Livas would abide by strict bail conditions and provide the court with a $6000 cash surety.
Mr Edmonds said his client intended to withdraw his guilty plea and the matter should be sent back to the ACT Magistrates Court for a disputed hearing.
Mr Edmonds argued his client should be released as the matter could take some time to be heard.
Master Mossop granted Livas bail.
Livas will reappear before the court to argue his plea withdrawal next week.