Both the New South Wales and the Queensland police forces are making it clear that they will not be lenient with people who are not adhering to the law when it comes to health and safety during the COVID-19 pandemic.
New South Wales
New South Wales police have charged seven people under the Public Health Act 2010 (NSW) and issued 45 COVID-19 related Penalty Infringement Notices (PINs) for offences within the past 24 hours.
Locally, three separate incidents in Ballina saw police warn several members of the public and arrest one man.
Police say that at around 12am on Saturday 18 April, officers from Tweed/Byron Police District were patrolling Missingham Park, Ballina, and spoke to three men, before issuing them a warning about the current restrictions under the Public Health Act.
Two hours later police were called to Owen Street, Ballina, and spoke to five people – three men and two women – who were consuming alcohol. The group claimed they were fishing when warned about the current restrictions, before being moved on from the area.
At about 2.30am, police were called to Meldrum Park where a 21-year-old man refused to leave and was arrested. Following a struggle with officers, he was taken to Ballina Police Station and charged with not comply with noticed direction re S7/8/9 – COVID-19, furnish false or misleading information, refuse/fail to comply with direction under Part 14, resist officer in execution of duty, and breach of bail. He was refused bail to appear at Lismore Local Court.
The Queensland Police Service (QPS) is providing ongoing support to Queensland Health as part of a co-ordinated whole of government response to the COVID-19 situation.
Under the provisions of the Public Health Act, police officers can take enforcement action against anyone who is failing to comply with public health directions set out by the Chief Health Officer.
An integral part of the QPS response is to ensure compliance with directions particularly around self-isolation, state borders, non-essential business activity, home confinement, movement and gathering.
Officers can also issue on the spot fines of $1334 for individuals and $6,672 for corporations which fail to abide by the health directions.
QPS COVID-19 response statistics
The following preliminary statistics are current as at: 12.01am Monday, April 20.
|Last 24hrs||Cumulative total since March 27|
|Breach of public health directions infringement notices||46||1,198|
|Compliance checks conducted on individuals in quarantine||40||4,239|
|Compliance checks conducted on non-essential businesses||0||6,195|
|Vehicles intercepted at state borders||1972||98,631|
|Vehicles turned around at state borders||11||1,663|
|People directed to quarantine at state road borders||100||3,791|
|Domestic airport passengers arriving into Queensland||161||16,636|
|Domestic airport passengers directed to quarantine||0||3,061|
|People refused entry to Qld at domestic airports||1||50|
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