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Russian man fined for cycling during travel curb hours in Ho Chi Minh City

Russian man fined for cycling during travel curb hours in Ho Chi Minh City

Thursday, August 19, 2021, 18:21 GMT+7
Russian man fined for cycling during travel curb hours in Ho Chi Minh City
Ho Chi Minh City police confront a Russian man for flouting COVID-19 movement curbs, August 17, 2021. Photo: Dan Thuan / Tuoi Tre

A 25-year-old Russian man in Ho Chi Minh City has been slapped with a total fine of VND2.2 million (US$96) for biking outside during movement curb hours and his aggressive attitude toward police officers, according to VnExpress news site.

The punishment decision was issued by authorities of Da Kao Ward in District 1, Ho Chi Minh City on Thursday.

The fine comprised a VND2-million ($87.5) charge for violating regulations on pandemic prevention and going out without a legitimate reason and another VND200,000 ($8.75) for disturbing public order.

The foreign man was spotted riding a bicycle on Nguyen Thi Minh Khai Street in the direction from the Thi Nghe Bridge to District 1 at around 8:00 pm on Tuesday.

At a checkpoint set up on the street, police officers requested to inspect his relevant papers.

The man did not follow the request but even constantly rode his bicycle back and forth at the checkpoint, the Cong An Thanh Pho Ho Chi Minh (Ho Chi Minh City Public Security) newspaper reported on the same night, citing the officers on duty.

A patrol team was then mobilized to the scene to help communicate with the man in English.

After being questioned for his pulled-down face mask and resistance to the city’s movement restrictions mandate, which requires all residents to stay home from 6:00 pm to 6:00 am the next day to curb the coronavirus spread, the man challenged the police officers and started threatening them with violence. 

Failing to pacify the situation, the officers had to bring him to the nearby Da Kao Ward police station for COVID-19 testing and further handling. 

His rapid test result came back negative for the virus, according to VnExpress.

At the police station, the Russian national told officers that he was well aware of the city’s mobility restrictions, but staying at home too long made him feel confined and want to ride outside, even during the prohibited hours.

Functional forces assessed that he had raised his voice when talking to the officers on duty, but not to the extent of opposition.

Therefore, he was only subjected to administrative sanctions.

On Monday, Ho Chi Minh City authorities extended the city’s social distancing drive by one month, banning outdoor travels at night-time along with other activities deemed non-essential.

The city is Vietnam’s largest coronavirus hotspot at the moment, recording 159,917 local COVID-19 cases since the fourth wave hit the country in late April. 

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