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£10k fines for gatherings temporary halted by police Published Date: 18/11/2020

Police forces were told to stop issuing £10k fines for gatherings but updated advice from the NPCC has now seen fines reintroduced.

The BBC reported that on Friday the NPCC advised forces to temporarily issue a court summons rather than a fixed penalty notice.

There were concerns about a potential disparity between the amount being paid by some upfront, compared to those who challenged the fixed penalty in court.

The NPCC have now however addressed the issue and advised police forces to continue issuing fines.

A spokesman said: "Following discussions with government, the issue we flagged last Friday has been fully addressed, and forces are advised that they can resume issuing £10,000 FPNs [fixed penalty notices] where appropriate."

"People found to be in breach of the regulations relating to gatherings of over 30 people will be made fully aware of their options when faced with a £10k FPN, to ensure fairness.

"The option of summons will remain available to officers, as it always has been, should the unique circumstances of a case mean that this is the most appropriate course of action. However, the vast majority of cases can be dealt with by way of FPN."

In a statement earlier on Tuesday, a government spokesperson said: "It is right that we have a strong deterrent. We are working with forces to ensure people are fully aware of their options when faced with a fixed penalty notice.

"If someone chooses not to pay their fixed penalty notice, the matter may be considered by a court and the individual could be subject to a criminal conviction."