British Virgin Islands

Friday, Apr 16, 2021

Drastic increase in penalties for breaking COVID-19 measures announced

Drastic increase in penalties for breaking COVID-19 measures announced

The Cabinet of the Virgin Islands has announced a barrage of stiff new penalties for persons breaking the territory's COVID-19 health guidelines, as authorities stamp down on lawbreakers.

The new fines were announced by the Minister of Health and Social Development, Hon Carvin Malone (AL), during a COVID-19 update on Thursday, December 17, 2020.

Up to $5000 for breaking COVOD-19 Quarantine


According to the new measures, an increase in the level of fines under the COVID-19 Control and Suppression Entry Regulations of 2020 will see persons who deliberately tamper and damage the geofencing device facing a fine of $2000.00 up from a paltry $125.00.

Persons who engage in unauthorised visits with a person in quarantine will face a fine of $5000.00 up from $500.00 and any person who contravenes the protocols or guidelines as set out in the regulations will face a fine of $10,000.00 up from a meagre $1000.00.

For those who break quarantine under the COVID-19 Control and Suppression (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 2020 (No.5 of 2020), the penalty has been increased to range from between $5000.00 to $10,000.00 for failing to comply with a quarantine order.


The new fines were announced by the Minister of Health and Social Development, Hon Carvin Malone (AL) during a COVID-19 update on December 17, 2020.

$100K fine for people smuggling, illegal abetting


Hon Malone also said that since the Government recognises the geographical location of the VI makes the borders porous, stiffer fines were necessary to curtail people smuggling.

Cabinet, therefore, “Increased the fine stipulated in Section 20(3) and 20(5)(a) of the Immigration and Passport Act for any person landing or embarking in the Territory, and any person being the master or captain of a vessel from which a person lands or embarks in the Territory and is in contravention of Section 20, from one thousand dollars and twelve (12) months imprisonment to one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000.00) and ten (10) years imprisonment,” he said.

For those assisting with or making arrangements for a person to enter the Territory illegally, or knowingly harbouring an illegal person for more than two (2) days, similar stiff fines will follow.

Cabinet approved an increase of the fine stipulated in Section 47(2) of the Immigration and Passport Act from three thousand ($3,000) dollars and two (2) years imprisonment, to one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000) and ten (10) years imprisonment.

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