Covid England: Police to enforce lockdown with ‘more fines’

Britons were warned last night they ‘should expect more enforcement’ from police under the new lockdown.

John Apter, chairman of the Police Federation of England and Wales, predicted there would be more fines handed out and less tolerance from officers as there are ‘no excuses’ for not knowing the rules this time.

But he also warned police could be cast as ‘villains of the pandemic’ as they bear the brunt of the public’s lockdown fatigue and frustration.

Mr Apter said the record number of fines handed out on New Year’s Eve demonstrated that increasing numbers of young people were prepared to break the rules.

Britons were warned last night they 'should expect more enforcement' from police under the new lockdown

Britons were warned last night they 'should expect more enforcement' from police under the new lockdown

Britons were warned last night they ‘should expect more enforcement’ from police under the new lockdown

John Apter (pictured), chairman of the Police Federation of England and Wales, predicted there would be more fines handed out and less tolerance from officers as there are 'no excuses' for not knowing the rules this time

John Apter (pictured), chairman of the Police Federation of England and Wales, predicted there would be more fines handed out and less tolerance from officers as there are 'no excuses' for not knowing the rules this time

John Apter (pictured), chairman of the Police Federation of England and Wales, predicted there would be more fines handed out and less tolerance from officers as there are ‘no excuses’ for not knowing the rules this time

Hundreds of partygoers were slapped with fines of up to £10,000.

Mr Apter said, after almost a year of enforcing Covid restrictions, many officers are ‘knackered’ and forces are under pressure due to rising sickness levels. In some areas, absence levels have risen to 15 per cent.

He added of the lockdown: ‘It will be easier for police to have one consistent rule for people to follow across the whole country, which means it is easier for people to understand and comply with what is expected of them. People should expect to see more enforcement as a consequence because there really are no excuses for not knowing the rules this time.

But he also warned police could be cast as 'villains of the pandemic' as they bear the brunt of the public's lockdown fatigue and frustration

But he also warned police could be cast as 'villains of the pandemic' as they bear the brunt of the public's lockdown fatigue and frustration

But he also warned police could be cast as ‘villains of the pandemic’ as they bear the brunt of the public’s lockdown fatigue and frustration

. Mr Apter said the record number of fines handed out on New Year's Eve demonstrated that increasing numbers of young people were prepared to break the rules

. Mr Apter said the record number of fines handed out on New Year's Eve demonstrated that increasing numbers of young people were prepared to break the rules

. Mr Apter said the record number of fines handed out on New Year’s Eve demonstrated that increasing numbers of young people were prepared to break the rules

‘But, where it is different from March is we now have a hardcore element who are against the rules. We have anti-lockdown, anti-vaccine protests to deal with and… crime levels have increased from March.

‘The majority of the public will do what is expected of them, but I think there is a real issue over virus and lockdown fatigue. There is a real frustration and the police often deal with the sharp end of that as people are angry when challenged.’ He added: ‘More and more people are dying and we have to play our part in bringing infection rates under control.

‘The public will expect the police to act against those wilfully breaking the rules and putting others at risk.’

Mr Apter also called for police to get priority for Covid-19 vaccines.  

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