By Tony Winterburn • 01 December 2020 • 7:46
Foreign Travellers Avoid Quarantine Fines After Disappearing From Police Radar.
POLICE could issue no fines to over 1,400 foreign travellers who may have ignored coronavirus quarantine rules after turning up at their addresses to find no-one was there. When officers eventually called at their homes to check if they were self-isolating they got no response, or there was no record of them ever being at that address.
Under current rules, anyone returning to the UK from a trip to most countries – with a few exceptions – should quarantine for 14 days or risk a £1,000 fine.
The National Police Chiefs Council (NPCC)said that in 586 cases, officers called “only to find that nobody with the relevant name lived at that address so no further enforcement action could be taken. (Another) 862 cases resulted in no answer at all when officers attended an address, with no further enforcement action possible.”
Since early June, police in England had checked 7,040 travellers and found most were complying with the rules or were persuaded to do so. Officers fined 223 suspects for not quarantining. Since mid-June, police in England and Wales have fined 641 people for not wearing facemasks, mostly in shops and a quarter on public transport.
The NPCC said that since the start of the first COVID-19 lockdown in late March, police in England and Wales had issued just under 25,000 fines in all, with the vast majority to people aged 18-39.
NPCC chair Martin Hewitt said: “Thank you to the vast majority of the public for sticking to the rules and following the guidance in place to limit the spread of the virus.
“Police will play their part to help the public navigate and understand changes in their area, particularly as we approach the festive period. The national lockdown periods in England and Wales have seen increased enforcement activity by forces, targeted towards those who commit the most serious breaches, risking public health.”
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