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Kent Police clamp down on 'Covidiots' with £12,600 of fines

Police issued £12,600 of fines in a week after catching 63 people breaking Covid-19 regulations.

Breaches included a birthday party in Thanet, scooter riders in Maidstone and a string of people from different households sharing cars. They also fined a man who had driven to look at cars for sale at a garage.

Kent Assistant Chief Constable Claire Nix
Kent Assistant Chief Constable Claire Nix

Assistant Chief Constable Claire Nix said: "It is unacceptable that people are still choosing to hold indoor and outdoor gatherings and to make unnecessary trips. At a time when there is so much pressure on Kent’s health services it is more important than ever for people to adhere to the government regulations."

All fines were issued from Monday to Friday this week.

Among those given penalty notices was a group of four riding scooters and playing music from cars at a car park in Sandling Road, Maidstone on Wednesday.They were each given a £200 fine.

During the early hours of the same day officers stopped a car in Stirling Way, Ramsgate and found three people from separate households. A police spokesman said: "They told officers they had driven from London to collect money that was owed to them. They were fined £200 each."

In the early hours of Tuesday officers found a car on the A244 in Riverhead outside a car dealership.The driver told officers he had driven from Sussex to look at the cars in the garage. He was fined £200.

Covid-19 marshalls and police patrolling town centres. Picture: Ian Burt
Covid-19 marshalls and police patrolling town centres. Picture: Ian Burt

A woman received the same penalty for hosting a house party in Sweyn Road, Ramsgate.Officers attended the property after reports of a disturbance outside. When they arrived they spotted birthday banners on the door.The home-owner claimed that everyone who attended had received negative Covid-19 tests.

And yesterday officers were called to a disturbance in Croft Court, Tunbridge Wells where people were seen climbing out of the windows. Four people were issued £200 fines for being part of an unlawful gathering.

There were four other incidents of people from different households found in cars together.

On Wednesday in Sotherton, Ashford, officers fined two men £200 each for being inside a car with other people they did not live with. Two people from different households were penalised for being inside a car together in Sir Thomas Longley Road, Medway on Tuesday. They told officers they were in the cars to talk.

On Tuesday two men, not from the same household, were fined after officers found them eating in a car in Culpeper Close, Medway. On Thursday two people who had met up in a car at Blue Bell Hill were each made to pay £200.

Stay Home Save Lives warning. Picture: PA Media
Stay Home Save Lives warning. Picture: PA Media

A man from Northfleet faces a £1,000 fine for failing to self-isolate after returning to the UK from Romania.

And a man was fined £200 on Wednesday for failing to wear a face covering in a supermarket in Charlton Green, Dover. He was asked by the store manager to wear a mask before entering but refused, at which point police were called.

Three men were also fined for not wearing face coverings in a takeaway shop in Strood following complaints.

Fines of £200 were also issued to people in Gillingham, Edenbridge, Rochester and Dover for allowing other people inside their homes.

Ms Nix warned: "The country is at a critical point and we must all understand the dangers of the rapid spread of this new variant of Covid-19. Kent residents should visit the government website to ensure they are familiar with what is and isn’t permitted and what may be exempt from the restrictions."

She added: "Officers will continue to patrol the county, explaining, engaging and encouraging people to adhere to the regulations and will enforce the penalty notices when they feel it is necessary."

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