Tennis coach sought sex with teens
April 2, 2004
AN international tennis coach invited two teenage girls to have a threesome with him while he was a teacher at an elite Melbourne school, a court was told today.
Gavin Maxwell Hopper, who once trained Mark Philippoussis and now runs a Gold Coast tennis academy with Pat Cash, has denied allegations he indecently assaulted a teenager while working as a teacher at Wesley College in the 1980s.
Hopper, 47, allegedly started a sexual relationship with the girl, who cannot be named, when she was in Year Nine in 1985.
A committal hearing in the Melbourne Magistrates Court was today told Hopper also propositioned a friend of hers when the girls were in Year 12.
The friend, who was married to an older man while still a student at Wesley, said that after school in April 1988, the alleged victim and Hopper were both at the apartment she shared with her husband.
The girl tweaked Hopper's nipples as the three of them chatted, and Hopper had his hand up the girl's dress, the friend told the court.
She said Hopper suggested a threesome after the conversation turned to sexual experience.
"I think I was a bit shocked about the invitation being opened to me and changed the subject," the friend said.
Hopper faces three charges of indecent assault and two of gross indecency on a person under 16 in his care or supervision.
He does not face sex charges as the statute of limitations requires charges of sexual penetration of a child over 12 to be laid within a year of the alleged offence.
While Hopper has not been required to enter a formal plea, his lawyer David Galbally, QC, told an earlier hearing Hopper denied the allegations.
The former physical education teacher coached top players Monica Seles, Wally Masur, Amanda Coetzer and Jason Stoltenberg in 13 years on the world tour.
He is a former fitness adviser with AFL club Fitzroy and has held academic posts at the University of Melbourne, Deakin University and RMIT.
The hearing before Magistrate Reg Marron resumes on Monday.