PHILIPSBURG–The Prosecutor’s Office on Wednesday announced that hefty fines will be given to persons and/or businesses found violating government’s large gathering and non-essential business closure restrictions. These measures have been imposed to mitigate the potential spread of coronavirus COVID-19.
“A hefty fine will be given to those who fail to comply with these restrictions. First-time violators will be given a warning by authorities. However, a fine will be issued for subsequent violations,” said the Prosecutor’s Office in a press release on Wednesday afternoon.
There is currently a ban against gatherings of more than 100 persons. Permits that have already been issued to hold events of more than 100 persons have also been postponed until further notice. Persons in violation of this measure will face a fine of NAf. 3,600 or US $2,000.
All non-essential businesses found operating during this period will also be subject to a fine.
Not allowed to open are educational institutions (with the exception of classes that can be given remotely); day care centres; early childhood development institutions; all schools, universities, and training facilities; retail stores such as those selling clothing, jewellery and souvenirs; sales outlets and shopping centres; vending stalls at the Philipsburg Marketplace; conference facilities; outdoor establishments that accommodate events; outdoor recreational activities; casinos (stand-alone as well as those attached to hotels); nightclubs and dance establishments; adult entertainment centres; art galleries and other exhibition halls; recreational centres; cinemas; businesses offering recreational activities such as zip-line, boat trips, quads, etc.; gyms and other indoor and outdoor sports facilities; museums; hair and nail salons; and barber shops.
Restaurants can open only for delivery and take-out services. Dining in is not allowed at any restaurant, even if the restaurant is located on a hotel property.
Small businesses, or those that employ between one and five persons, will be given a fine of NAf. 450 or $250. Medium-sized businesses, employing between five and 25 workers, will be fined NAf. 900 or $500.
Large businesses, employing between 25 and 150 persons, will be fined NAf. 9,000 or $5,000. Extra-large businesses with more than 150 employees will be fined NAf. 18,000 or $10,000.
Additionally, persons not following the commands of a police officer will be fined an amount between NAf. 270 and NAf. 630, or $150 and $350.
“Payment arrangements may be made if the fine(s) cannot be paid in full. However, failure to pay the fine will result in being summoned to court in July/August 2020,” said the Prosecutor’s Office.
The Prosecutor’s Office has also enacted preventative measures to protect its employees and visitors to its office. “During this crucial time the public is encouraged to stay indoors more often … Persons are encouraged to pay their fines via online banking. When making a payment for a fine via online banking, remember to include the ‘proces-verbal’ or ‘parket number,’” said the Prosecutor’s Office.
For more information, persons are asked to contact the Prosecutor’s Office by sending an e-mail to
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Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/fines-for-violating-govt-coronavirus-restrictions