A Sydney man has been fined almost $10,000 for breaching Queensland health directives and verbally abusing staff while in hotel quarantine, and a flight attendant who collected him from northern New South Wales has been fined $4,135.
- The woman drove the man from Ballina to the Gold Coast and Brisbane
- In quarantine the man allegedly opened the door to his room and abused staff while not wearing a mask
- The Chief Health Officer said she was “very worried” the man could have infected other people
The 26-year-old man left lockdown in Sydney and flew to Ballina, where he was picked up by the woman, a flight attendant, and driven into Queensland.
Both later tested positive to the highly infectious Delta variant of COVID-19 after spending time in the community, sparking a widespread contact tracing effort.
Police have alleged the man flew from Sydney to Ballina to meet up with the woman, from the Brisbane suburb of Banyo, who drove him to Tugun on the Gold Coast at 1:00pm on July 14 and subsequently on to Brisbane.
They said the man allegedly attended three shops in Chermside, where he used false information to check-in on July 15.
After being placed into hotel quarantine in Brisbane, police said the man allegedly opened the door to his room and verbally abused staff while not wearing a mask.
Police have also alleged that while in the hotel, after being given his COVID-19 Delta strain diagnosis, he ignored warnings and continued to open his door while not wearing a face mask.
The man has since been put in quarantine in hospital.
The pair has been issued infringement notices relating to a breach of border directions when they travelled from New South Wales into Queensland on July 14.
The woman, 36, was handed a $4,135 fine for the breach.
The 26-year-old man was fined over the border breach as well as another for providing untrue information and a third for failing to comply with the COVID-19 direction of an emergency officer.
The fines for his three breaches total $9,648.
Authorities had previously said the woman had not fully cooperated with contact covtracers and had engaged a lawyer.
Health authorities believe the man is responsible for infecting the Qantas flight attendant with COVID-19.
She tested positive last week, prompting concerns she had travelled on six regional flights while infectious.
Passengers on those flights were ordered into isolation before it was determined she had not been infectious at the time.
Chief Health Officer Jeannette Young said she was still “very, very worried” the pair, who were active in the community while infectious, could have spread the virus to others.
“Although Delta tends to create cases early, it still has cases up to 12, 13 days later – so it is far too early for any of us to relax,” she said.
“Could everyone keep wearing their masks, because I genuinely think that has made a difference for Queensland in not seeing large cases out of any of those infected people.”
Police said every person entering Queensland requires a separate declaration pass and all people travelling together must be eligible to enter the state.