A HARTFORD woman appeared before magistrates at Northwich, on Wednesday, accused of harassing her neighbour over a five-year period.

Jan Krause, 47, of Walnut Lane, denied she had harassed Carol Story from May 2004 to December 2009.

Krause had applied to the court to have her hearing held in private and for an order to be issued which would prevent her from being identified by the press.

As a transsexual, Krause said she felt the publicity would place her at risk of physical harm and hate crime.

However, the Guardian argued she did not come under the legal definition of a ‘vulnerable person’, which normally includes children or the mentally ill, and therefore the courts must carry out the hearing in public.

Magistrates agreed and turned down both applications.

Chairman Robert Hunt said: “We understand and have sympathy for any embarrassment that may result. However, having considered carefully, we do not feel that the matter is not one of national security or likely to obstruct the course of justice.”

Krause was granted conditional bail to appear before the district judge for a three-day trial at Chester Magistrates’ Court, starting on June 15.