Princeton RCMP track down border crosser under Quarantine Act

A man who owns a seasonal property in the Princeton area was flagged by border services officers for not completing the interviews required for re-entry into Canada on Saturday, April 25. (Black Press file photo)

A man who crossed the Canada-U.S. border at Blaine, Wash., was intercepted by Princeton RCMP on the weekend under the Quarantine Act.

At approximately 1 p.m. Saturday, April 25, the local detachment was called by Canada Border Services.

Officers there said a man crossed the border before his interviews with officials were complete.

The driver indicated he was heading for the Princeton area.

RCMP Sgt. Rob Hughes said police were made aware of the man’s name, vehicle and destination.

Related: Border officials ask Princeton RCMP to intercept traveller under Quarantine Act

When confronted by police “he was probably a little surprised,” said Hughes. “He didn’t think he had done anything wrong.”

The man thought customs and health officials were finished questioning him, said Hughes.

Police talked with the individual, who was traveling with two children, and explained the family must be quarantined for 14 days under federal order.

While non-essential travel from the U.S. is not permitted, the man —who owns a seasonal property near Princeton — is a Canadian citizen.

“You can’t stop Canadians from coming into Canada.”

Hughes said no laws were broken.

RCMP across the country have been asked to enforce the Quarantine Act Order, which was declared by federal Health Minister Patty Hadju on March 25.

Under the order, anyone arriving into Canada — including snowbirds and those being repatriated by the government — must stay in self-isolation for 14 days upon arrival back home.

Those who violate the order face fines up to $750,000 and six months in prison, while “willfully or recklessly contravening this Act or the regulations could be liable for a fine of up to $1,000,000 or imprisonment of up to three years, or to both,” states the RCMP.

Canadian police to make home visits to enforce mandatory quarantine for travellers

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andrea.demeer@similkameenspotlight.com

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