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Eight arrested and more than 50 PINS issued following protest - Tweed Heads

Sunday, 22 August 2021 05:24:38 PM

NSW Police have arrested eight people and issued more than 50 Penalty Infringement Notices following protest activity in Tweed Heads today.

Earlier today (Sunday 22 August 2021), a high-visibility police operation was launched by officers from Tweed/Byron and Richmond Police Districts to prevent, disrupt and respond to any planned mass gathering or protest activity.

During the operation, protestors crossed the border between Queensland at Coolangatta and NSW at Tweed Heads.

Eight people were arrested and taken to Tweed Heads Police Station, where charges are expected to be laid.

Officers also issued 54 Penalty Infringement Notices for breaches of the public health orders.

Minister for Police and Emergency Services David Elliott said he is incredibly disappointed in the selfish actions of hundreds of people this afternoon around the NSW-Queensland border.

“Communities, across New South Wales are sick and tired of the abhorrent actions of the minority. We have seen this sort of behaviour result in further lockdowns; the very thing these individuals are protesting against,” Mr Elliott said.

“There is no doubt in my mind that we risk seeing lockdowns extended, affecting the entirety of New South Wales, because of actions such as what we’ve seen this afternoon.

“This is such a critical time for communities to adhere to the health orders and to limit movement. Actions like what we have seen this afternoon pose a significant risk to the community.

“I again, thank the officers of NSW Police Force for their work in quickly moving in on this event and conducting arrests where required,” Mr Elliott said.

Tweed/Byron Police District Commander, Superintendent David Roptell, said officers responded swiftly to disrupt the activities of protestors in the area.

“NSW Police are taking the threat of unauthorised protest activity extremely seriously and will not hesitate in the enforcement of the Public Health Orders,” Supt Roptell said.

“It is disappointing that people in our community continue to put others’ lives in danger by attending mass gatherings in the current climate.

“It is in the best interest of the health and safety of everyone across the state and around Australia, to comply with the Public Health Orders, so we may see the end of lockdown.

“Further inquiries will be made to identify those who were in attendance at today’s protest and appropriate action will be taken.

“We thank the majority of the community for doing the right thing by staying home and staying safe – and for their ongoing support of local police carrying out their duties to protect the public,” Supt Roptell said.

Proactive high-visibility patrols were conducted throughout the local area for the remainder of the day and no further Public Health Order breaches were detected.

Police continue to appeal to the community to report suspected breaches of any public health order or behaviour which may impact on the health and safety of the community by contacting Crime Stoppers: on 1800 333 000 or via https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence. The public is reminded not to report crime via NSW Police social media pages.