Covid: Nine police officers fined after eating in together at London cafe

Matt Mathers
·2 min read
<p>Rule breach came as coronavirus cases soared across the capital</p> (Getty Images)

Rule breach came as coronavirus cases soared across the capital

(Getty Images)

Nine Met Police officers have been fined after breaking Covid-19 rules by eating in together at a cafe in London.

The officers, members of the Met's South East Basic Command Unit, have been ordered to each pay £200 for breaching virus restrictions.

A member of the public saw the uniformed officers eating at a cafe in Greenwich, southeast London, earlier this month.

Their patrol cars were parked outside and the member of the public took a picture and posted it online, alerting the Met.

All the officers were subsequently investigated and handed fixed penalty notices of £200.

Under current rules, cafes and restaurants are only allowed to provide a takeaway service.

Chief superintendent Rob Atkin, South East BCU commander, said: "Police officers are tasked with enforcing the legislation that has been introduced to stop the spread of the virus and the public rightly expect that they will set an example through their own actions.

"It is disappointing that on this occasion, these officers have fallen short of that expectation."

Mr Atkin added: "It is right that they will pay a financial penalty and that they will be asked to reflect on their choices."

It was not immediately clear why the cafe allowed the officers in or if any action has been taken against its owners for flouting the rules.

The Independent has contacted the Met for additional comment.

The officers’ trip to the cafe came as coronavirus cases and deaths surged across the capital.

On Tuesday, Met commissioner Dame Cressida Dick urged the public to report people who are breaking the rules.

She said a "small minority" is not following the regulations.

Dame Cressida told LBC radio: “The last thing I’m going to say on national radio is everyone should be shopping everybody. I don’t think that.

“What I do think is, if you do have concerns that somebody is persistently not complying with the restrictions, with the regulations, then, yeah, you should talk to us.

“If you feel comfortable to do so, then talk to us.”

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