A BRADFORD judge has warned defendants claiming to have symptoms of the coronavirus that it was not a long-term “get out of court card.”

Judge Jonathan Rose fully acknowledged the devastating effects of Covid-19 but said that people who did not turn up for their cases because they feared they had the virus needed to get tested and not keep on merely absenting themselves when the case was relisted.

He issued a warrant after a woman did not appear for her sentencing hearing at Bradford Crown Court today after telling her legal team she still had symptoms of the virus almost a month after her case was adjourned because she said she was unwell.

Judge Rose said the woman had had ample time to get tested following the postponement of her case.

He said the warrant would be executed if she did not produce a Covid-19 test result, whether positive or negative, by the end of next week.

Judge Rose stressed that he did not want defendants with symptoms of the virus turning up at the court building but they needed to follow up their absence by getting a test result to send to the court.