Norwich student handed £2,000 lockdown fine wants apology and money back after Sue Gray report

A man who was fined almost £2,000 for breaking lockdown rules has called for a refund and “a formal apology” after it emerged police are investigating at least 12 events across government for Covid breaches.
Copyright: PA
Bryn Richards is now demanding a formal apology and a refund of his fine. Credit: PA

A student fined nearly £2,000 for breaching lockdown rules says he wants a refund after it emerged at least 12 government gatherings are being investigated by police.

Bryn Richards, a university student from Norwich, was charged £1,995 for being part of a gathering outdoors of more than two people in November 2020, during the UK’s second national lockdown.

The 38-year-old claimed he was arrested after interacting with participants of a libertarian, anti-lockdown march while out for a walk in the city, adding he was “caught in the crossfire, between the police and the protesters”.

“If any member of the public did what they did, they’d most assuredly have been fined, without any hesitation by the police,” he told the PA news agency.

“I had £2,000 seized from me for doing much less than what they did.

“Quite frankly, I want that money back, and I want a formal apology.”

Mr Richards described his own scepticism of lockdown rules and said he felt “nobody should be fined” for breaching Covid restrictions therefore he would oppose those in the government being fined “on principle”.

“If they avoid being fined, I will cite it, as an example, to help justify the compensation of everyone fined under the Coronavirus Act 2020 – it will be a fire lit under that particular cause,” he added.

The release of Sue Gray’s limited inquiry report revealed investigations into gatherings including the prime minister’s birthday celebration and a gathering in his Downing Street flat.