Police vow action on London virus breaches

Isobel Frodsham
·1-min read

The head of London's police force has vowed officers will act "more quickly" when dealing with lockdown rule-breakers in the city.

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick said on Tuesday while the vast majority of people were complying with the rules, a "small minority" are not sticking to the restrictions.

"We are moving more quickly to enforcement," she told the BBC.

"This doesn't mean we won't engage with people... but we will move more quickly to enforcement, particularly when someone is breaking the law, breaking the regulations, and it is absolutely clear that they must have known, or do know they are, then we will move quickly to enforcement and fining people."

People can be fined up to 200 pounds ($A351) in England and 60 pounds in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales if they break COVID-19 restrictions the first time.

This can go up to 6,400 pounds in England, 960 pounds in Scotland and Northern Ireland and 120 pounds in Wales for a second offence.

People who do not pay a fine may be taken to court, where they could be fined an unlimited amount.

The police chief added people may be arrested for breaching the restrictions, depending on the circumstances.

Last week, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced England was entering its third lockdown in less than a year after a spike in COVID-19 cases and deaths.

The latest figures from the UK government show that nearly 82,000 people have died within 28 days of receiving a positive COVID-19 test in Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland since the beginning of the pandemic.

A total of 3.1 million people have also tested positive for the virus in the UK.