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South Korean police arrest man for violating self-isolation rules

All Headlines 18:59 April 14, 2020

SEOUL, April 14 (Yonhap) -- A Seoul court on Tuesday issued an arrest warrant for a South Korean man on charges of violating self-isolation rules, the first formal detention of an alleged quarantine offender.

The Seoul Eastern District Court approved the police's request to arrest a 68-year-old man who went outside despite being under coronavirus-related self-isolation.

The court cited a high risk of him fleeing and the severity of allegations against him.

The resident, who has tested negative for COVID-19 in the southeastern ward of Songpa, is alleged to have visited a spa and a restaurant though he was under two-week self-isolation after arriving here last week, according to the police.

Earlier, the South Korean police said they would deal with self-isolators in a "stern" manner and probe whether self-isolation violators repeatedly breached the rules, attempted to hide their itinerary or came in contact with other people.

Police have so far probed 28 people for violating self-isolation guidelines. The cases for three of them have been referred to the prosecution.

South Korea has tightened measures related to the virus, such as imposing mandatory two-week self-isolation on all international arrivals. Those who breach self-isolation rules could face up to one year in prison or a fine of up to 10 million won (US$8,197).

The country has reported 10,564 COVID-19 cases since its first case on Jan. 20.

A South Korean man leaves a Seoul court on April 14, 2020, after attending a hearing on the legality of his arrest over allegations of violating self-quarantine rules. (Yonhap)

brk@yna.co.kr
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