A WOMAN, who told her ex-husband she would stop his contact with their children unless he dropped assault charges against another man, has been jailed for intimidating a witness.

Shazia Ditta, 40, admitted perverting the course of justice by contacting him and encouraging him to withdraw his support for an upcoming trial, and was jailed for nine months.

Judge Jonathan Rose told the court: “Perverting the course of justice strikes at the heart of the justice system. Those who commit offences of this sort will find that they are sent to prison immediately.”

Bradford Crown Court heard how Ditta had called the cousin of her ex-husband on July 18, 2022.

She told him to pass on a message to her ex-husband that she will not allow him contact with their children until he talks to the brother of the man accused of assaulting him the previous month.

The man in question has denied grievous bodily harm and is due to face trial.

Later the cousin calls Ditta back while her ex is in the car with him and records the conversation which is then reported to police.

The prosecutor told the court: “Miss Ditta says that for [her ex] to be able to see his children he must do what he needs to do. After asking what this means, he asked if this means drop the charges and she says yes.

“Around 30 seconds later, she explains again, that he needs to drop the charges and that he must speak to [his alleged attacker’s] brother about this.”

In a victim personal statement Ditta’s former partner details how he has had to move out of the area with his family and is in the process of changing his name by deed poll.

The police have fitted a panic alarm at his house and given him a mobile panic alarm as well.

There was no reason given in court for Ditta’s actions.

In mitigation, the court heard how Ditta, a teaching assistant, of Marsh Street, Bradford, had taken responsibility for what she said during that telephone call.

He added that what she said amounted to a threat, albeit not a threat of violence.

But Judge Rose added “Do you think a threat to prevent a man from seeing his children is less harming, damaging and long lasting than a threat of violence?”

In sentencing he later added: “For you as a parent know how wounding, how hurtful, how painful the threat of never seeing children again can be.

“Your offending is grave.”

A 10-year restraining order was also imposed.