Chief magistrates across the country have begun to publish updated lockdown admission of guilt penalties.
The schedules are based on provincial and magistrate districts and are in line with the new level 3 lockdown regulations, introduced in June and July.
The South African Police Service can give a person who has been arrested on suspicion of a less serious crime an option to pay an admission of guilt fine.
Such a fine allows a person to admit guilt for a less serious offence without having to appear in court, thereby preventing an unnecessary overload of the court system.
It is also meant to resolve less serious matters quickly where an accused person accepts responsibility for having committed a minor offence. However, an admission of guilt comes with a criminal record.
Thousands of people have already paid an admission of guilt fine since the National State of Disaster was first declared, while just under 200,000 were scheduled to appear in court.
While the fines differ between regions, the below table provides an idea of what you can expect to pay based on the latest directive for KwaZulu-Natal.
|Intentionally making a misrepresentation that any person is infected with Covid-19.||R3 000|
|Failure by a driver or operator of any form of public transport to take reasonable steps to ensure a passenger wears a mask.||R1 000|
|Failure by a manager or owner of a building, place or premises, used by the public to obtain goods or services, to ensure that members of the public wear a mask.||R1 000|
|Failure by an employer to provide every employee with a cloth face mask or allows an employee to perform any duties or enter the premises without a mask.||R1 000|
|Failure by a principal of a school to ensure that the relevant authority supplies it with sufficient masks.||R500|
|Convening of an illegal gathering during the national state of disaster.||R1 000|
|Failure to be confined to his or her place of residence from 21h00 – 04h00 daily (it should be noted that the curfew now starts at 22h00).||R1 000|
|Attends or hosts a night vigil.||R500|
|Evicting or causing a person to be evicted from their home under alert level 3 without court authorisation.||R3 000|
|Holding or arranging an initiation school.||R2 000|
|Failure to keep a place or premises, normally open to the public, where sporting, cultural, entertainment, leisure, exhibitional, organisational or similar activities should be closed for the duration of the national state of disaster.||R3 000|
|Failure by a bus or taxi service to carry 70% or less of the licensed capacity for provincial travel.||R1 000|
It should be noted that some offences do not have an association of guilt fine attached, possibly a sign of their perceived severity under the revised level 3 lockdown rules. These offences include:
- The sale of tobacco products;
- The prohibited transportation of liquor;
- The sale and dispensing of liquor;
- Hindering, interfering or obstructing an enforcement officer during the course of their duties.
You can find the most up to date schedules for each province under the ‘Covid-19 guilty fines’ tab here.