Coronavirus: Rule-breakers hit with £1,000 fines - including two people in virus hotspot Bolton

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Two people in Bolton who "recklessly" flouted self-isolation rules have been hit with £1,000 fines.

The town in Greater Manchester has been at the top of coronavirus infection rate tables for weeks and residents are already under stringent measures to curb the rise in cases.

Police confirmed that a man in his 40s was fined on Tuesday after returning from Spain on 20 September.

Having been instructed to quarantine, he went back to work at his business in Horwich just outside Bolton. Police officers turned up at his business where they issued the fine.

In another case, a woman in her 20s from Darwen in Lancashire returned to work at a school in Bolton just two days after returning from a trip to Amsterdam.

Greater Manchester Police said they have now handed out four £1,000 fines which were introduced to try and make more people comply with the rules around quarantining when returning from countries that are not on the exemption list.

Public Health England officials have been contacting people to check if they are following the rules and if they fail to get a response passenger details are passed onto the police.

Chief Inspector Nicola Williams of Greater Manchester Police said: "I hope these fines send out a clear message to those who wrongly believe they are exempt from this rule that we will enforce this wherever we find there to be breaches.

"This is an immensely challenging time for all of us - whether it's the impact these restrictions are having on our personal lives, or on our working lives.

"We are still working by the principles of engaging, explaining and encouraging before opting for the last resort of enforcing, but there is no tolerance for those who are blatantly ignoring the rules that the rest of us are doing our best to abide by on a daily basis."