The threat of coronavirus is not a get out of jail free card, the Wodonga Magistrates Court has heard.
Concerns about the pandemic were raised in the Victorian Supreme Court last week, with possible delays to proceedings and potential issues if the virus enters the prison system.
Courts are closed to onlookers and no new trials will start.
But Wodonga magistrate Ian Watkins on Thursday said there was a two-sided argument to the issue when considering bail, and questioned whether a man accused of travelling long distances to obtain property by deception would be endangering public safety.
Police prosecutor Wayne Taylor said the virus was just one consideration during release applications.
"It's not a get out of jail free card," he said.
Braydan Crighton and his cousin, Chris Graham, are accused of driving to areas where they were unknown to fleece money out of young cashiers at businesses.
The court heard Crighton, 28, had been travelling from Wodonga to areas as far away as Preston, Bendigo and Baccus Marsh.
The court heard they would target young female retail workers.
Crighton would allegedly use a $100 note for a small purchase, pocket part of the change, and rush, fluster and intimidate the employee to pocket up to $300 in extra money.
The court heard of nine occasions that had occurred, resulting in about $1000 being wrongfully obtained.
Detective Senior Constable Justin Foots said those incidents were the "tip of the iceberg" and were believed to make up about one per cent of the offending.
Senior Constable Taylor said it was not opportunistic offending and victims had been left distressed.
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"It's an ongoing criminal enterprise ... he's doing it for profit," he said of Crighton.
"It's been ongoing for years, a similar pattern of behaviour."
Crighton is also suspected of speeding with his two-year-old daughter in a car, on the wrong side of the road, in Wodonga last week.
Defence lawyer Sally Wilson said there was a risk her client would spend more time in custody than normal in the current climate.
She said Supreme Court Justice Lex Lasry considered time in custody to be "a lot more punitive" due to the pandemic.
Crighton, who was arrested on Thursday, will remain in custody until at least Tuesday when the matter returns to court.
Graham will return to court on June 15.