A TRANSGENDER woman has appeared in court for making several bomb hoax threats at a maximum security prison in Worcestershire.

Marcia Walker, previously known as Mark Walker, faces seven charges which all involve alleged bomb hoaxes at HMP Long Lartin at South Littleton, near Evesham.

The 45-year-old, now of HMP Frankland, appeared at Worcester Crown Court yesterday but was not formally arraigned. This is where the charges are formally put to the defendant by the court clerk so they can enter their pleas. The case was adjourned to allow time for a psychological report to be prepared. The seven counts on the indictment all concern communicating false information with intent.

The particulars on each count are that Walker ‘communicated to Her Majesty’s Prison Long Lartin information she knew or believed to be false with the intention of inducing in that person or any other person a belief that a bomb was present in HMP Long Lartin’.

This was said to have taken place on the following dates: September 26, 2016; November 3, 2016; January 4, 2017; February 3, 2017; March 19, 2017; May 31, 2017; June 30, 2017.

The case was prosecuted by Darron Whitehead. Walker was represented by Simon Worlock. At the short hearing Walker was asked to confirm her name.

Mr Worlock said the case had previously been adjourned by judge Robert Juckes QC so the defence could obtain a psychological report. He said: “We’re not in a position to have a report from her yet because legal aid has only just been extended to allow that to happen.”

Judge Nicholas Cole adjourned the case to get the report, ‘not least because there has been an issue raised about fitness to plead’. The judge ordered the report to be prepared by July 25 with any defence skeleton argument by August 1 and the prosecution skeleton argument in response by August 22.

The plea and trial preparation hearing, when Walker is scheduled to enter her pleas, was set down for August 30 at Worcester Crown Court.

The judge remanded Walker into custody until the next hearing.