27th October 2020 – (Hong Kong) Two persons were sentenced by the Eastern Magistrates’ Courts today for violating the Compulsory Quarantine of Persons Arriving at Hong Kong from Foreign Places Regulation (Cap 599E) (the Regulation).
The two cases involved a woman aged 60 and a man aged 47. They were earlier issued compulsory quarantine orders separately, stating that they must conduct quarantine at home for 14 days. Before the expiry of the quarantine order, they left the place of quarantine on March 27 without reasonable excuse nor permission given by an authorised officer. The woman and the man were charged with contravening sections 8(1) and 8(5) of the Regulation and were sentenced to immediate imprisonment for 14 days and 20 days respectively.
Pursuant to the Regulation, starting from March 19, save for exempted persons, all persons arriving from countries or territories outside China would be subject to compulsory quarantine for 14 days. Moreover, pursuant to the Compulsory Quarantine of Certain Persons Arriving at Hong Kong Regulation (Cap 599C), starting from February 8, 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 also be subject to compulsory quarantine for 14 days. Breaching a quarantine order is a criminal offence and offenders are subject to a maximum fine of HK$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 62 persons have been convicted by the courts for breaching compulsory quarantine orders and have received sentences including immediate imprisonment for up to three months or a fine of HK$15,000. The spokesman reiterated that resolute actions will be taken against anyone who has breached the relevant regulations.