In Australia, more than 33,000 Covid fines will be withdrawn or refunded in the country’s most populous state of New South Wales after a court deemed them invalid. A legal advocacy group challenged the pandemic-era fines on the basis they were “too vague”. The fines were issued for a range of alleged offences – from carpooling to attending a public gathering. They ranged from 1,000 dollars to 3,000 dollars.
Shortly after the decision was given by New South Wales Supreme Court, the Commissioner of Fines Administration withdrew 31,121 of the 62,138 fines. In a statement, Revenue NSW said it prioritised the health and safety of residents during the pandemic.
However, while it said it would withdraw the fines, it added the decision does not mean the offences were not committed.
Meanwhile, New South Wales is currently experiencing its third Covid-19 Omicron wave with the state recording more than 31,000 cases this week