A 23-year-old bloke in Wollongong has been charged with fraud after he allegedly faked having COVID in order to get off work.

According to NSW Police, the man allegedly sent a text to his boss at 4:15 am (!!!) on Monday stating that he had tested positive for COVID-19 and couldn’t go to work 270km away in Newcastle.

As is standard procedure when someone tests positive, his co-workers were stood down and had to isolate at home while they waited for their own test results to come back negative. A bunch of locations around the workplace also required deep cleaning.

However later that day, the Wollongong man allegedly texted his boss again to say that a second COVID test result had come back negative.

“Subsequent inquiries confirmed the man never received a positive test result,” NSW Police said in a statement.

He was arrested on Thursday afternoon and charged with conveying false information that a person or property is in danger. The man was granted bail and will appear in court in September.

Wollongong had already been in lockdown along with Greater Sydney, while Newcastle and the Hunter region followed suit on Thursday afternoon.

With that in mind, lying about getting COVID is pretty fucked. People are on edge at the moment, and understandably so.

Please, we beg of you, find literally any other excuse if you’re looking to chuck a sickie.

Image: Getty Images / Peter Harrison