Couple who left Melbourne lockdown to travel to Qld cop hefty fine

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The couple who fled Melbourne during the city’s lockdown and drove into Queensland before testing positive to Covid-19 have each been slapped with a $4000 fine.

The duo travelled through NSW and on to the Sunshine Coast earlier this month without a travel exemption, putting the state on high alert of a potentially deadly outbreak.

After testing positive to the virus, both were transported to hospital to complete their quarantine and were released on Friday.

Once they were released, the couple in their 40s were questioned by police, who accused the duo of deliberately providing false information to obtain a Queensland border declaration pass.

The pair were reported to have spent several days in regional NSW before moving north to Queensland on June 5.

The 44-year-old woman tested positive in Caloundra on June 8, almost a week after she first developed symptoms, while her partner was confirmed as a new case soon after.

RELATED: Infected Melbourne couple did not have travel exemption

The woman and her husband left Victoria on June 1 after a hard lockdown was announced and travelled through regional Queensland centres Goondiwindi and Toowoomba.

Initially, authorities reserved judgment on the pair but Queensland chief health officer Dr Jeannette Young revealed soon after the infections were reported that her department had not given the couple permission to forego strict directives.

“No, they didn’t come through the exemption process, so it’s now up to police to investigate whether they came through any other process,” she said.

The couple were both transported to Sunshine Coast University Hospital to be quarantined, while 17 close contacts of the pair were identified, including the family members they were staying with in Caloundra.

The other 15 were at venues at the same time as the couple as they travelled into the state.

They were each handed a fine of $4003 for failing to comply with a Covid-19 border direction.


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