MasterChef star Ben Ungermann has denied police sexual assault allegations and says he will fight the charges in court.
The 33-year old was charged on March 6 with two counts of sexual assault following an alleged incident on February 23, while MasterChef was being filmed in Melbourne.
According to allegations published by Daily Mail Australia on Tuesday, the MasterChef contestant was arrested by police detectives in the Docklands in February.
Ben is listed to appear before the Melbourne Magistrates' Court on June 25 and Victoria Police confirmed the news of the arrest in a statement yesterday.
"The arrest follows an investigation into an alleged sexual assault in Docklands on 23 February. A 33-year-old Queensland man has been charged with two counts sexual assault," the statement said.
Now, Ben has hired a criminal defence lawyer to fight the charges.
"I act for Ben Ungermann," lawyer Adam Houda wrote on Twitter late on Tuesday night.
"Allegations against my client are vehemently denied and will be defended."
In a statement to Daily Mail Australia, Mr Houda says Ben strongly denies the charges.
"My client is distressed by the charges, which came as a huge shock to him," he told the publication.
"The allegations, I am instructed, are a complete fabrication and are denied."
Ben, whose departure from MasterChef was announced on the show last Sunday night, is now working at Queensland restaurant, Woodlands Of Marburg.
The chef has created an Indonesian menu for the Brisbane country retreat and both Ben and the staff at Woodlands Of Marburg shared the news on their respective social media accounts.
"Woodlands of Marburg is proud to introduce new Gourmet Chef Ben Ungermann to the Woodlands family. Many new exciting adventures ahead..." the company captioned an image of Ben standing outside the establishment.
Eliminated MasterChef contestant Hayden Quinn elaborated on his former colleague's shock departure from the show, revealing he and the other contestants were blindsided by the news.
"It's much different this season because we don't all live in the one big house like past contestants, we've got our own apartments, we share with one other person. It's private. So there could be times where you don't see anyone for a number of days, you might only see someone in the kitchen," he told Now To Love earlier this week.
"Basically we turned up and Ben wasn't there and Jock said what he said, that was it," Hayden added. "I haven't seen or heard from Ben since, so I know as much as you."
News of Ben's disappearance from the show first broke back in April.
Production company Endemol Shine said of Ben's departure: "We can confirm Ben Ungerman has left the MasterChef Australia competition. As this is a police matter, we will not be making further comment."
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