At least two people face fines of £10,000 for breaking rules aimed at containing the coronavirus, Chief Constable Jo Shiner said.
She told police and crime commissioner Katy Bourne: “We have got a couple of investigations ongoing where we may well issue the £10,000 fine to people who have been incredibly irresponsible.”
Sussex Police is among the forces to have issued the highest number of fixed penalty notices for breaking the rules, dishing out 868 fines since Friday 27 March.
The chief constable said that about 75 per cent of the fines were given to people from outside Sussex, mainly those heading for beach resorts like Brighton in the hot weather earlier this year.
But, she said, a couple of hefty penalties were being considered for locals who had flouted the rules, putting themselves and others at risk of infection.
Sussex Police recently received a £645,000 share of the £30 million “surge funding” provided to help forces in England and Wales to stay on top of covid-19 enforcement.
The chief constable told Mrs Bourne that plans were being drawn up to use the money to target towns and communities most affected by people who refuse to comply with the restrictions.
She added that crime had returned to pre-covid levels and urged people to follow the pandemic restrictions such as wearing a mask and sticking to the rule of six.
She said: “We know it’s been a really long frustrating time for everybody and we have seen very much that tensions are rising in some areas, particularly because of the different dynamics that some families are now experiencing, sadly.
“We would just urge people to continue to use common sense, to use as much patience as people can have, continue to report stuff to us and we’ll continue to police communities with empathy, with sympathy, but with enforcement where we need to.”
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