Singapore charges Chinese couple for impeding virus-tracing efforts

SINGAPORE: Singapore has charged a married couple from China under the Infectious Diseases Act for providing false information and obstructing coronavirus contact tracing, the Ministry of Health said in a press release Wednesday.

The pair were charged on Tuesday and the case will be heard in court Friday, the ministry said.

According to the release, the husband arrived in Singapore, where his wife lives, on Jan 22, and tested positive for coronavirus Jan 31. The wife was issued a quarantine order the next day.

The two were charged for providing false information about their movements and whereabouts from Jan 22-29; the wife also allegedly provided false information while under quarantine.

The ministry says it established the pair’s true movements “through detailed investigations”.

Anyone convicted for a first offence under the act can be fined as much as S$10,000 and/or imprisoned for as long as 6 months.

In a separate statement, the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority said it rejected a 45-year-old man’s application to renew his re-entry permit after he ignored a precautionary stay-home notice following recent travel to China.

The man, who entered Singapore on Feb 20 and departed Feb 23, lost his permanent residency status and was barred from re-entering the country, according to the statement.