By Park Si-soo
A Briton faces punishment for violating self-isolation rules that are being implemented nationwide to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun declared last week the "no-tolerance principle" for those ignoring self-isolation rules, under which violators will face up to one-year in jail or a 10 million won ($8,196) fine ― and deportation in the case of foreigners.
According to Suwon City, the Briton in his 30s returned from Thailand on March 20 with symptoms of coronavirus infection. At Incheon International Airport, he was ordered to stay at home in Suwon for two weeks, monitoring his health.
But he broke the instruction the following day ― he visited several public places in the city using a friend's car, bus or subway, having contact with at least 23 people.
As symptoms continued developing, he received a virus test at a triage clinic in Yeongtong-gu at 3:30 p.m. on March 23. He was supposed to stay at home until the outcome was announced, but he ignored this.
He played indoor golf the next morning and roamed outside not wearing a mask.
He was informed he was infected with coronavirus at 12:50 p.m. and health workers took him to Seongnam Citizens Medical Center.
City officials confirmed he had broken the self-isolation rules to visit Suwon, Yongin, Gwacheon and Seoul. All people whom he contacted are being quarantined.
Suwon Mayor Yeom Tae-young pledged on Sunday he would make the Briton "pay the price" for violating the self-isolation rules.