Corona Virus Offences and Complaints - 609/20

Date Responded 21 May 2020

Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')

As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held at the time of a request, by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions.

You asked:

1. “A Journalist was arrested by the Police on 14.4.2020 while he was taking exercise in Gateshead aparently he was released 20 minutes later can you please clarify if the Individual was charged with any offence and what article of the Corona disease policy was he arrested on? if he was not charged with any offence can you please clarify if he was cautioned for any so called offense?

2. Can you please clarify if there was a complaint made to the police by any individual regarding the mans arrest? or by the individual himself.?

3. if this issue was classed as the police being over zealous regarding the incident can you clarify if the police have apologised verbally or by letter?

4. Has the police officer who arrested the man been disciplined by the police for being over zealous with his actions?

5. Can you please clarify how many people have the police arrested and charged with breaching the corona virus policy please give statistics for the past 4 callendar weeks?

6. How many persons have been fined by the police for breaching the corona virus policy please give statistics for the past 4 callendar weeks and highlight how much has each person been fined ?

7. Have the police started to check supermarket trolleys when people come out of shops to see if persons have bought any non essential items ? If items classed as non essential have been consfiscated by the police what do the police do with these items?

8. How many complaints have been made by individuals who have been arrested for corona virus breaches and those being fined ? please give statistics for the past 4 callendar weeks?”

In Response:

Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted with various Departments of Northumbria Police. I can confirm that the information you have requested is held, in part, by Northumbria Police.

I am able to disclose the located information to you as follows.

1-4 In relation to these part of your request, Northumbria Police can neither confirm nor deny that it holds the information you have requested as the duty in s1(1)(a) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 does not apply, by virtue of the following exemption:

S40(5) Personal information

Under the Freedom of Information Act, information that is disclosed is released to the public as a whole and not just to the individual applicant. As such, Northumbria Police would not wish to confirm or deny to the public at large whether information is held about any individual.

You should consider this to be a refusal under section 17 of the Act.

No inference can be taken from this refusal that the information you have requested does or does not exist.

5. To note, the charge count is based on disposal data; this is because the coronavirus legislation offences are all non-notifiable and thus not listed as crimes. Disposal data is subject to change, as it reflects the current status of a case. We do not maintain a history of this data. As such, it is correct as of the time of writing, which is 11 May 2020.

Arrests 9
Charged 6

6. During the period specified a total of 121 fines were issued. All fines are £60 reduced to £30 if paid within 14 days.

7. No information held. Northumbria Police have not been checking supermarket trollies therefore shopping is not being seized

8. No information held. There have been no complaints received as specified by your request.

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