A "radioactive" suspected sex offender has gone on the run after failing to attend his trial for child pornography offences.
A judge has issued a warrant for the arrest of Thomas Leopold, a college principal, amid warnings from doctors that he is contaminated with a "dangerous" level of radiation.
The 42-year-old was due to face trial for downloading indecent images of children but fled Britain after receiving large doses of radiotherapy treatment for a thyroid condition.
Southwark Crown Court heard that Mr Leopold could harm anyone he comes into contact, due to the radiation.
Judge John Price said: "Please warn officers that when he is arrested he might be radioactive."
He added: "This is not a joke."
The court was told that Mr Leopold jumped bail on February 5 - four days before his trial - to board an overnight ferry to Ireland, under the nose of police.
Defending, Jeannie Mackie, said her client was "chronically" ill and warned of the dangers his radioactive condition posed to people coming into contact with him.
She said: "His doctor confirmed that he is dangerous, in terms of radioactivity, for a period of six weeks after treatment and he had treatment on February 3."
Leopold, of Hammersmith, west London, denies five counts of making indecent images of children, and one of possessing indecent images of children, in 2006.
He be easy to find when the sun goes down.