Switzerland: More than 2,400 people fined for cross-border shopping during coronavirus lockdown

Switzerland: More than 2,400 people fined for cross-border shopping during coronavirus lockdown
A Swiss customs officer attaches a chain to a fence after opening the Swiss-French border on June 14, 2020 in Thonex near Ambilly, France. Photo: FABRICE COFFRINI / AFP
2,448 people were caught and fined for cross-border shopping during the coronavirus lockdown, new figures have revealed, while 112,049 people were turned away at the border.

Switzerland closed its borders to cross-border shoppers on April 16th, three weeks after borders were closed to tourist traffic. 

READ: How Switzerland avoided a coronavirus 'catastrophe' by protecting cross-border workers 

Cross-border shopping was again allowed from June 15th onwards. 

In the lockdown period, the Federal Council has declared that 2,448 people were fined for cross-border shopping, among a total of 8,848 fines for lockdown breaches. 

The fine for all breaches of Swiss lockdown restrictions is CHF100.

READ: Swiss cross-border shoppers fined for not wearing masks in Germany

In addition, 112,049 were turned away trying to cross the border into Switzerland. In total, cross-border passenger traffic dropped by 80 percent during the lockdown period. 

During this time, Switzerland’s borders were left open only to citizens, residents or cross-border workers.

There was a further exception to these categories for people who could show they were in a “situation of extreme necessity”, with 16,854 allowed to cross the border in this category. 

Swiss authorities said that crime in border regions dropped by more than 40 percent during the lockdown, primarily related to the trafficking of people, narcotics and arms. 

 


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