Victorian pub in Echuca fined $22,000 over lockdown breach by staying open

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A rebel publican has been hit with a big fine for continuing to operate during Victoria’s lockdown.

Trevor Andrews told his customers that despite the lockdown rules, he would be keeping The Pastoral Hotel in Echuca open for full dining services in the bistro and bar.

But on Wednesday, CCTV captured police officers raiding the venue and arresting Andrews.

He copped a $22,000 fine.

“There was like fifteen of them there and they barged in through the doors and that was it,” Andrews told 7NEWS.

On Wednesday, CCTV captured police officers raiding the venue. Credit: 7NEWS

“It shouldn’t happen, I shouldn’t be charged for it. I’m trying to run a business and keep my head afloat.”

Andrews wasn’t the only one to cop a fine and it was an expensive night for customers who chose to support him.

“The rules apply to everyone equally,” Health Minister Martin Foley said.

But there has been criticism over the punishments for the rules as while Andrews was fined for keeping his pub open, the City of Hume family who breached isolation will not be.

Trevor Andrews told his customers that despite the lockdown rules, he would be keeping The Pastoral Hotel in Echuca open.
Trevor Andrews told his customers that despite the lockdown rules, he would be keeping The Pastoral Hotel in Echuca open. Credit: 7NEWS

Their visit to Coles Craigieburn led to the virus infecting twelve other people.

“That family clearly breached the rule in terms of how it applied, but did so in a particular set of circumstances and a particular set of arrangements with no ill intent,” Foley said.

It is still not clear what penalities the Sydney removalists who brought the Delta strain into Melbourne will face.

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