Curfew violators convicted and fined thousands

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By Orville Williams

Two violators of the mandatory curfew rules put in place to curb the spread of the coronavirus have been convicted and ordered to pay fines totalling $6,000.

According to a police press release, Otis Nash, a 48-year-old man from Coolidge, was charged with failing to comply with the restrictions when he appeared before Chief Magistrate Walsh at St John’s Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday.

Police officers attached to Gray’s Farm Police Station were on patrol in the city early Monday morning and arrested Nash after they saw him on Market Street at about 5.30am.

He pleaded guilty and was ordered to pay $5,000 forthwith, or serve six months in prison.

The other case – 57-year-old Raphael McDonald Joseph of Jennings – also admitted violating the curfew when he appeared before St John’s Magistrates’ Court on Monday.

Joseph was found on All Saints Road by Bolans police officers at approximately 9pm. He was arrested and taken into custody. He was ordered to pay $1,000 forthwith, or serve 30 days in prison.

Meanwhile, another resident has been charged with a similar breach and is due before court this week. Twenty-five-year-old Kenneth Coulbourne, of Parham Town, was arrested by officers during a patrol in Parham, at approximately 10pm on Monday.

Police continue to appeal to the general public to conform to the established curfew laws in order to reduce the spread of the coronavirus.

During a virtual Parliamentary sitting yesterday Prime Minister Gaston Browne announced the government’s decision to replace the current 8pm to 6am curfew with a 24-hour lockdown of the country. The new rules go into effect at midnight tonight and last for seven days.

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