A 48-year-old man was sentenced to immediate imprisonment for 10 days by the West Kowloon Magistrates’ Courts today (March 24) for violating the Compulsory Quarantine of Certain Persons Arriving at Hong Kong Regulation (Cap. 599C) (the Regulation).
The man was earlier issued a compulsory quarantine order stating that he must conduct quarantine at home for 14 days. Before the expiry of the quarantine order, he left the place of quarantine on February 28, 2020, without reasonable excuse nor permission given by an authorised officer and was stopped by an immigration officer at the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge Control Point. He was charged with contravening sections 8(1) and 8(5) of the Regulation and was sentenced by the West Kowloon Magistrates’ Courts today to immediate imprisonment for 10 days.
Pursuant to the Regulation, all persons who have stayed in the Mainland, Macao or Taiwan in the 14 days preceding arrival in Hong Kong, regardless of their nationality or travel documents, will be subject to compulsory quarantine for 14 days. Moreover, pursuant to the Compulsory Quarantine of Persons Arriving at Hong Kong from Foreign Places Regulation (Cap. 599E), starting from December 25, 2020, all persons arriving in Hong Kong (either via the airport or land boundary control points) who have stayed in places outside China on the day of arrival in Hong Kong or during the 21 days before that day have to undergo compulsory quarantine for 21 days in designated quarantine hotels. Breaching a quarantine order is a criminal offence and offenders are subject to a maximum fine of $25,000 and imprisonment for six months.
A spokesman for the Department of Health said the sentence sends a clear message to the community that breaching a compulsory quarantine order is a criminal offence that the Government will not tolerate, and solemnly reminded the public to comply with the Regulation. As of today, a total of 118 persons have been convicted by the courts for breaching compulsory quarantine orders and have received sentences including immediate imprisonment for up to 14 weeks or a fine of up to $15,000. The spokesman reiterated that resolute actions will be taken against anyone who has breached the relevant regulations.