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Covid in Wales: More than 3,000 fines issued for breaches

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media captionPartying students told by police "kill the music"

More than 3,000 fines have been issued by Welsh police forces for breaches of coronavirus since the start of the pandemic, new figures have shown.

The National Police Chiefs' Council (NPCC) said 3,028 fixed penalty notices were issued to people in Wales between 27 March and 16 November.

Dyfed Powys Police, handed out more than half of the fines in the country, with 1,759 notices.

Almost a third of all notices were given to people aged between 18 and 24.

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Three-quarters of fines were issued to men.

Of the 3,022 fines in Wales, 2,215 of those related to breaking restrictions on movement.

This amounts to about 73% of all fines in Wales.

English forces issued just under 22,000 fines over the same period.

Elsewhere in Wales, North Wales Police issued 582 fines, South Wales Police gave out 425 and Gwent Police 232. The British Transport Police issued 30.

Over the weekend, South Wales Police was granted extra powers to check for coronavirus breaches in Cardiff.

The force said it stopped more than 200 cars coming into the city and issued eight fixed penalty notices, including to a couple from Essex who said they were dropping off Christmas presents.

It said it had given 69 fines in total over the weekend for various offences, including house parties.

The NPCC also said serious violent crime, shoplifting, vehicle crime and burglary were all lower compared to last year in the four-week period to 25 October.

Its chairman, Martin Hewitt, said: "Crime is lower than at the same point last year, however the demand on the police service remains significant.

"Particularly during the month of December, officers and police staff will be working hard to tackle crime, keep communities safe, and play our part in reducing the spread of coronavirus.

"We encourage the public to follow the rules in place for their part of the country, and to remain vigilant as shops begin to open again in time for Christmas as criminals may seek to exploit opportunities to commit crime."

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