A MAN is facing being sentenced to 12 months behind bars for refusing to wear a mask – despite allegedly being exempt from the coronavirus measure.

Manuel Garcia Vilar appeared before a judge in Jaen yesterday after being denounced on numerous occasions by Policia Local.

In a previous court appearance in Villacarrillo, a judge ordered him to put on a mask, but during his statement he almost fainted.

His lawyer Francisco Leon claimed he became disorientated and ended up ‘wandering through all the court rooms’, labelling the situation as ‘inhumane.’

The 48-year-old defendant has racked up a dozen citations from police for not donning the protective gear while outdoors, and another three for ignoring the rule at court.

But his lawyer says the accused is not a coronavirus denier but a sufferer of several illnesses which make him exempt from having to wear a mask.

Leon told the court his client has a deviated nasal septum, is obese with diabetes and has respiratory difficulties.

It means, according to the royal decree which came into force on June 9, he is exempt from donning the facial protective gear.

The defendant, his lawyer alleges, was not given enough time to retrieve his medical documents from his home back in Valencia.

“The medical records should have been retrieved before rushing to hold a trial,” lawyer Leon said.

The trial continues.

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