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Australia Victoria Police will rarely use discretion when issuing $4,957 coronavirus fine for unlawful gatherings in Melbourne

13:35  28 september  2020
13:35  28 september  2020 Source:   abc.net.au

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Victoria threatens heavy fines and says ADF presence will increase during Melbourne lockdown – video. Police in Victoria have been given The $ 4 , 957 penalty, which can be issued for breaching quarantine and isolation orders, is the largest on-the-spot fine on the statute books in Victoria .

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a group of police officers riding on the back of a car: Police will issue the $4,957 fines to anyone gathering in breach of current coronavirus restrictions. (ABC News: Gemma Hall) © Provided by ABC Health Police will issue the $4,957 fines to anyone gathering in breach of current coronavirus restrictions. (ABC News: Gemma Hall)

Melburnians have been warned that police will issue a $4,957 fine to anyone caught taking part in an unlawful gathering, except in the most extreme circumstances.

Yesterday, Premier Daniel Andrews said the fine would apply to any gatherings which breached the state's coronavirus health directives. It's an increase from the previous $1,652 fine.

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Victoria police are monitoring traffic seeking to leave metropolitan Melbourne and residents face ,000 fines if they leave the city The on-the-spot fine for not wearing a face covering is 0 and the fine for breaching isolation orders multiple times after testing positive for coronavirus is $ 4 , 957 .

In Victoria police can arrest or issue ,652 on-the-spot fines for people caught gathering in groups of more than two or for being outside of their homes “Blatant disregard of the directions such as house parties will be enforced. Police will use discretion in other instances acting on intelligence or

Under Melbourne's restrictions, a maximum of five people from two households (or any number of people from a single household) can gather in public spaces outside.

Visitors are only allowed in homes if they are visiting intimate partners, are part of a single-person bubble or have an essential reason.

Chief Commissioner Shane Patton said officers would penalise "anyone" who breached the rules on indoor and outdoor gatherings, and would rarely exercise discretion not to issue fines.

"The risk of spread of coronavirus from group gatherings is significant, the Chief Health Officer has stated that," he said.

"For these reasons … the use of discretion will be only in the most extreme circumstance and very rarely applied."

A fine of the same value is already in place for Melburnians who attempt to travel to regional Victoria without a valid reason.

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Victoria Police , Melbourne , VIC . Victoria Police have arrested two people and issued six fines following an unlawful gathering at Chadstone Police will also issue 52 penalty notices to 10 people located at the Kookaburra Court home The directions by the Chief Health Officer, under the State of Emergency declared in Victoria , have been enacted to help stop the spread of Coronavirus .

Commissioner Patton urged any member of the public who suspected there was an unlawful gathering occurring to call the Police Assistance Line on 131 444.

"It's not 'dobbing in someone', it's actually calling out selfish, arrogant, ignorant behaviour," he said.

"Because that's what it is, where people deliberately put the other people at risk."

He said with warm weather forecast for the coming weekend, there would be increased surveillance in popular public spaces and residential streets.

"They'll be seeing if there's a lot of cars in a street in a particular area outside a residence, we'll be knocking on those doors," he said.

Police discover multiple parties in short-term accommodation

Commissioner Patton said police had interrupted at least 10 separate parties being held at short-term rental properties over the weekend, and issued 93 fines.

He said at one party held on the Surf Coast, a group of adults had installed a jumping castle.

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Victoria has just 16 new cases of coronavirus amid hopes lockdown will be eased as case numbers fall fasted than expected. Police outnumber citizens in Melbourne as they are still only allowed outside for two hours of exercise and the curfew remains in place.

Melbourne 's 9pm curfew will finally be lifted tomorrow night after the state recorded just 16 new However, Mr Andrews also enormously increased the fine for breaking coronavirus gathering limits to Police outnumber citizens in Melbourne as they are still only allowed outside for two hours of

"It's just amazing," he said.

He said there were 40 people at a party at Hoppers Crossing, in the city's west, where police gave out 15 fines.

Under the new rules, those fines would total nearly $75,000.

"That's a heck of a party," he said.

"But we're not going to step away from it, because these are the CHO guidelines and it's absolutely imperative that we enforce them to stop the spread."

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When asked if the end of Melbourne's overnight curfew would make the job of police more difficult, Commissioner Patton said the curfew had been "beneficial" because it made it easier for police to target and enforce breaches of the directives.

He said police still had "adequate powers" to do their job, but he would rather see community members keeping one another in check to "do the right thing" than law enforcement being required.

When asked if the nearly $5,000 fine would act as a genuine deterrent for people determined to enjoy a party, Commissioner Patton said he believed it would.

"I think when you put number five with three zeros next to it, it is such a significant hit to the pocket that people will say, 'it's just not worth the risk'," he said.

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