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Four Passengers Fined £10,000 Each After Failing To Disclose Entering UK From Red List Countries

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Four Passengers Fined £10,000 Each After Failing To Disclose Entering UK From Red List Countries

Four passengers arriving at Birmingham Airport have each been fined £10,000 by police after they failed to disclose that they'd travelled into the UK from 'red list' countries.

West Midlands Police confirmed that the passengers were stopped by border force officers and were not able to leave the airport, the BBC reports.

As of Monday, all passengers entering the UK from countries on the list must perform a 10 day quarantine period at a cost of £1,750 in a government-appointed hotel.

That list of 33 red list countries includes Brazil, Portugal, and South Africa and exists to stop the spread of Covid-19 from outside Britain, particularly from countries with concerning new variants of the virus.

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The restrictions came into force on Monday morning and the four passengers had already been fined by midday that same day, a senior West Midlands officer told the area's Strategic Policing and Crime Board.

Passengers entering the UK from red list countries are taken straight to hotels. Credit: PA
Passengers entering the UK from red list countries are taken straight to hotels. Credit: PA

Temporary Assistant Chief Constable Chris Todd also confirmed that six other passengers had arrived into the airport in that timeframe from red list countries and had declared where they came from and agreed to head to a quarantine hotel nearby.

However, of the offenders, he said: "There are some people who have attempted to hide their routes but that's not worked out."

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There are currently five airports through which those who require a period of mandatory self-isolation can enter the UK.

Anyone who fails to self-isolate upon entering the country faces a fine of between £5,000 to £10,000 and there is a maximum possible sentence of 10 years for those who lie on their passenger locator form about having been to or passed through a country on the red list.

The passengers were fined £10,000 each for failing to disclose where they'd come from. Credit: PA
The passengers were fined £10,000 each for failing to disclose where they'd come from. Credit: PA

It was not made clear in the Strategic Policing and Crime Board meeting where the passengers who received the fines had travelled into the country from, but there were only four flights that landed in Birmingham Airport on Monday.

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Once such flight came in from Istanbul in Turkey, and that flight is thought to have contained some passengers from a red list country.

The only other airports that can currently accept passengers travelling from countries that require a mandatory period of hotel quarantine are Heathrow, Gatwick, London City Airport, and Farnborough.

A West Midlands Police spokesperson told LADbible: "West Midlands Police has a proportionate increase in policing at the airport in order to support checks with regards to essential only travel.

"Fines for breaches of current restrictions are issued by Border Force.

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"The safety of passengers is a key priority for us and we will continue to engage with passengers to ensure they are only at the airport for essential purposes only and encouraging those without good reason to be there, to go home.

Only five airports can take travellers from red list countries at the moment. Credit: PA
Only five airports can take travellers from red list countries at the moment. Credit: PA

"Enforcement will be used as a last resort for those who fail to comply with the regulations.

"There are no further details available on fines issued at the airport yesterday."

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The government has ordered that passengers arriving from red list countries are taken straight from their arrivals lounge to one of their appointed quarantine hotels.

According to the Department for Health and Social Care, the government has 4,963 rooms at 16 airport hotels, as well as another 58,000 on standby, should they be necessary.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: UK News, Coronavirus, travel, Covid-19

Tom Wood
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