Coronavirus: Italy threatens jail for sufferers violating quarantine

Italy has announced strict new punishments to try and clamp down on the spread of the coronavirus in the country, including possible jail time for people who have the virus and violate quarantine.

The new orders, published late Tuesday night, include:

  • Those who have tested positive and do not stay home could face one to five years in prison.
  • Fines for violating quarantine rise from 400 euros ($430) to 3,000 euros ($3,245).
  • Businesses that break rules designed to keep the virus from spreading could be closed from five to 30 days.
  • The regulations will be reviewed each month until July 31, and could be made stricter, the government decree says.

The decree does not extend the length of the current restrictions, which are due to end on April 3.

Italy, the new epicenter of the virus, has recorded nearly 70,000 cases and almost 7,000 deaths, according to a tally by Johns Hopkins University.

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