Anyone found to have lied about a recent visit to a country on the British government’s travel ban list faces up to 10 years in prison.
Anyone arriving in England and found to have lied about a recent visit to a country on the British government’s travel ban list faces up to 10 years in prison under new tough coronavirus border policies announced Tuesday.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said that from Monday, residents of the U.K. and Ireland arriving in England from the places on the government’s “red list” will have to purchase a “quarantine package” that costs 1,750 pounds ($2,400) per person and covers accommodation, virus testing and other items. Individuals not abiding by the rules, including those arriving from a red list country without a hotel booked, also could be subject to a series of fines, he said.
“I make no apologies for the strength of these measures because we’re dealing with one of the strongest threats to our public health that we’ve faced as a nation,” Hancock told lawmakers. “People who flout these rules are putting us all at risk.”
The British government is set to announce on Monday the next stage of its vaccination rollout beyond the four groups deemed to be at most risk. The government is hoping that its rapid rollout of vaccines, in addition to its border measures and an ongoing national lockdown, will see the number of COVID-19-related deaths fall dramatically. On Tuesday, another 1,052 people were reported to have died across the U.K. after testing positive for the coronavirus, taking the total to 113,850, Europe’s highest pandemic death toll.