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New NZ case of ‘isolated’ covid patient visiting supermarket to be charged

By RNZ News

Health Minister Chris Hipkins says New Zealand’s latest case of covid-19 will be charged for breaching isolation and visiting a central Auckland supermarket last night.

Hipkins said the 32-year-old man, who arrived from India on July 3, left his managed isolation last night to go to the Countdown supermarket on Victoria Street in Auckland city.

The man was outside the facility for 70 minutes.

Hipkins said after CCTV footage was viewed and the man was interviewed, the current assessment of the risk to the public was low.

“The person wore a mask although indicated that was removed for short periods of time,” he said.

In a statement, Countdown said the supermarket closed for cleaning at 8.15 this morning and will reopen tomorrow.

The company said it was “incredibly disappointed that this has happened given the potential for an incident like this to put our team and customers at risk”.

‘Self isolating as precaution’
“We have asked all of our team that were working last night, including the nightfill team, to self isolate as a precautionary measure. They will get tested over the next few days and we are offering them any and all support they need.”

Officials do not know what the man purchased from the supermarket.

Hipkins said all covid-19 facilities were on standby and people needing a test would have no problems getting one.

Individuals within these facilities need to “play by the rules”, he said.

“These are acts of selfishness and we intend to use the full weight of the law.

“My understanding is he left through a smoking area where the fences were being replaced,” Hipkins said.

Air Commodore Darryn Webb, head of Managed Isolation and Quarantine, said the smoking policy – as well as the security policy – will be looked at.

Robust system in place
He said there was a robust system in place “however, as we’ve seen, we can always do better”.

Webb said there was a guard outside Stamford Plaza when the man left.

The security guard watched the man leave but wasn’t sure if the man leaving was a contractor, Webb said.

“They don’t have the powers of police to apprehend…clearly it’s about communicating…if it’s logical that they take chase then that’s what they do.

“It certainly looks like it was a spur of the moment idea,” Webb said.

CCTV footage showed that no one else had left Stamford Plaza, Webb said.

Hipkins said the hotel was a managed isolation facility, not a “maximum security prison”.

Police called immediately
In a full statement, Webb confirmed that the man will be charged.

“Around 6.50pm the man escaped through a fenced area at the Stamford Plaza when he was out smoking, as a section of external fencing was being replaced. Security attempted to follow the man but were unsuccessful in locating him.

“Police were called immediately, and enquiries were underway to locate the man including reviewing CCTV footage and undertaking substantial area searches, before he returned to the facility where he was then interviewed by police.”

The man walked to the supermarket on foot and purchased items at a self-service checkout, before returning to the hotel about 8pm.

“Once the man’s movements were established, police visited the supermarket and ensured the self-service checkout and the areas entered by the man were cleaned.

“CCTV footage from within the supermarket has confirmed there was no close contact between the man and any staff or customers during his time there.”

‘Actions completely unacceptable’
Police are looking at other CCTV footage to figure out the man’s movements in the Auckland CBD.

“The actions of this man are completely unacceptable. Returnees are given clear instructions and information about what their responsibilities are. Managed isolation is a critical part in our defence against covid-19, and it is up to each and every person entering this country to play their part.

“We take any breach of the covid-19 rules very seriously. Wilfully leaving our facilities will not be tolerated, and the appropriate action will be taken.”

The fencing in place at all managed isolation facilities is being replaced with 6 feet-high fences.

No wonder Cindy passed over the chance to front this. She must have known more about this than what we do. 

What are we not being told? If the shit hits the fan and we have to go back to level 1 lockdown, I can see the public being well and truely pissed off and ignore any demands from Cindy. Her family of 5 million would be so pissed that it could cost them the election.

Knowing this is a possibility, I cannot understand why Liabour are being so useless in keeping those in managed isolation, in managed isolation.

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  1. Name and shame – with pictures

    Presumably this individual won’t have been allowed in without an NZ passport so deporting is not an option, but I have no problem with community consequences.
    Everyone is entitled to privacy until they’re asshats then the public are entitled to safety.



    • If he is a dual pass port holder, why can not the NZ passport be stripped off him?
      Then kicked out.

      Ok there could possibly be some family, but that could be weighed up in less than a day.



  2. I wonder if he had a “sexual emergency”. Now this is pure speculation, but why can’t he account for 40 to 50 minutes… unless he is too ashamed to reveal the truth. Plenty of knock shops around that part of the world…..

    Very happy to fully retract this if I am proven wrong.



  3. I suspect that some cultures are more inward-looking and less sensitive to their role and responsibility within the wider community.
    I spoke to an Indian friend of mine some months ago about the responsibility of self-isolation by people coming into this country from overseas. He told me that he did not trust his Indian relatives to self-isolate. “They’ll be good for about three days,” he said. “But then they will want to go shopping and off they’ll go.”
    I suspect this way of thinking has something to do with an over-fatalistic attitude to life, and an indifference to the suffering of others (because they had it coming to them from their behavior in their previous life). Who knows. I am not that familiar with Indian culture (and yes, I know that India is a vast sub-continent with a multitude of cultures).

    Maybe they are just irresponsible and selfish, which we all know to be a universal human characteristic.



  4. In India where this moron comes from he’d get a bashing with long canes and the boot by the police when they caught him .
    Here in NZ he’ll get 14 more days of seclusion in a good hotel and then appear in court with the usual excuses and get let off with a warning and instant access to our generous benefits,in a few months he’ll be able to bring the rest of his family and be given a house,case manager and places at a training institution,god we are so tough when it comes to criminals.
    A lot of these people see the average NZr as a ripe plum to be plucked because we are generally polite and trusting and in their countries that is a weakness as they are run on kickbacks and corruption.



  5. This is not mis-management, this is intentional

    Labour are not being incompetent (no one could be this incompetent). This is deliberate. Labour know enough about the public service to know that if you do not hold their feet to the fire, then what always happens with a unionised workforce will happen – they will be negligent and ineffective at doing their jobs.

    Labour are not asking the questions of the officials to ensure proper controls are in place.

    We are in the middle of a PLANNED-EMIC. The level of coordination is obvious when you start to look at it!

    Why did Democrat controlled states take the outrageous step of releasing criminals “because of Covid”…….. because they needed the violent criminals to be on the loose to do the BLM rioting and the looting! And law and order is one of Trump’s strengths (not many terrorist attacks on Trump’s watch!).

    Why did Democrat mayors put Covid positive patients in retirement homes – because they needed to drive up the death rate from Covid and old people were the only ones really at risk – to feed the narrative that Trump wasn’t handling the crisis well!

    Why are the high numbers of cases in the US being pushed so hard (when it’s obvious that just about everyone is going to test positive for Covid antibodies eventually as we develop herd immunity and the US is testing 150k people per day! More tests = more Covid positive results. No one is mentioning that the death rate is crashing down every day). The reason is that the DNC know that there is no way for Trump to lose at the ballot box in November – the only way they can win is if they can get mail-in voting instead and they can commit massive voter fraud to steal the election.

    The last point is particularly relevant here in NZ. The Covid MIQ fiasco shows us how utterly useless the state sector is at maintaining any system integrity – how infinitely corruptible will be the postal voting system that the CoL will try to bring in if we have to go into lockdown again? For Winston and the Greens – rigging the 2020 election is quite likely to be the only way they retain their lavish lifestyles – they need community spread, they need to force the country into lockdown again. What better way to achieve it than to blame the usual plague of winter sniffles on Covid – after all we now know that sufferers from the Common Cold will return positive Covid antibody tests (they are of course both Coronavirus variants!).

    And this is why the push-polling we are currently seeing, where there are implausibly high polling numbers for Labour are so important – this is why they oversample the demographics that lean left and they under-sample those that don’t. I’ve never heard of a young LGBTQi person complain about a polling company rejecting them when they find out their age – whereas I’ve heard of dozens of examples of oldies or professionals who have had that experience. If the push-polling numbers keep on suggesting a Labour outright win – that will be the way the voter fraud is justified when we are stripped off our right to vote in person and we have to vote by mail.



    • “I’ve never heard of a young LGBTQi person complain about a polling company rejecting them when they find out their age…”

      I’ve never heard of an old LGBTQi person, so that could be the reason. (Or I need to get out more.)



    • My early suggestion was to tie lockdowners to their families and burn them alive in the streets. I have since been vindicated and we can now see this would have saved countless lives and suffering.

      The total deaths of this so called pandemic have still not reached the level of a bad seasonal flu year. Meanwhile cities burn as lockdown supporters rape, murder, rob and loot.

      This is 100% political.



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