Queensland, beautiful one day, paranoid the next: how police search trucks for Victorians smuggled into the state, Prime Minister claims
- Police and disaster relief in Queensland were concerned about Victorian travelers
- Prime Minister Annastacia Palaszczuk warned against human trafficking operations
- The state is concerned that some Victorians may be trying to sneak behind trucks
Queensland police are hunting down Victorians smuggled across the border, Prime Minister Annastacia Palaszczuk has warned.
The Sunshine State leader confirmed that she had attended an operational briefing in which law enforcement officers and disaster relief workers expressed concerns that infected travelers from Victoria were being illegally brought to Queensland in trucks.
Queensland police are hunting down Victorians who are being smuggled across the border, Prime Minister Annastacia Palaszczuk warned (pictured).
A wave of new infections has led dozens of Melbourne suburbs to return to phase 2 closure.
The Queensland government now fears that human smuggling operations could bring in Victorians seeking to escape the closure.
“They are concerned that that practice might exist,” said Palaszczuk.
“So what we say to everyone is, if you think about it, don’t do it.
“You will be fined. Trucks are also randomly stopped and if you participate as a truck driver, you will also be fined. ‘
Queensland has registered eight new cases of coronavirus in the past 30 days.
However, Victoria has seen more than 400 cases in the past week after breaches of the state’s hotel quarantine program for returning travelers led to an increase in infections.
A Queensland police officer speaks to a motorist at a checkpoint in Coolangatta on the Queensland-New South Wales border
A motorist with a protective face mask is shown being interrogated at a police checkpoint on the Queensland-New South Wales border
While Queensland will ease their strict social distance measures and border restrictions, anyone from Victoria hoping to enter the state will be forced to undergo a 14-day quarantine period at their own expense.
Palaszczuk said anyone entering the state will be asked to declare that they have not been to Victoria for the past two weeks.
Travelers who have been found lying to the police during random checks or roadblocks can be fined $ 4,000.
“Earlier, we’ve seen other heavy cargo (s) swing that sort of thing through,” said Vice Commissioner Steve Gollschewski, Queensland state disaster coordinator.
“They’ll still be able to do that, but we’ll randomly intercept them to make sure … people don’t get through who shouldn’t.
Victoria has been brutally removed from a viral map of Australia when Melbourne begins its second coronavirus lock
“We’ve already had people try to test the system all the way through, so we’re really going to make sure people don’t.”
Mr Gollschewski said that it is everyone’s responsibility to understand and listen to and follow closely the public health instructions in Queensland.
“Any person traveling must have a completed passport for the Queensland Border Declaration and those traveling by road must have a clear one in their vehicle to give way,” he said.
“They must also have proof of identity with a home address.
“The Queensland Border Declaration Pass is a print-at-home document and is issued after completing an online questionnaire.”
Anyone traveling from Victoria to Queensland will be fined $ 4,000 for lying to the police