DULUTH -- Two men from Fort Frances, Ontario, just across the border from International Falls, Minnesota, have been charged with violating Canada’s strict two-week quarantine for anyone returning from trips outside the country.
The Ontario Provincial Police on Tuesday, June 16, said Ernest Calvert, 62, and Hunter Calvert, 19, returned to Canada from the U.S. on June 1. As a result, the men were ordered to quarantine at their residence in Fort Frances for 14 days.
But a police investigation ensued after law enforcement officials observed the two men outside their residence at the Front Street boat launch getting into their boat before their quarantine was up.
Both men have been charged with Section 58 of the federal Quarantine Act: “'failing to comply with an order prohibition or subjecting to any condition upon entry into Canada.” The charges carry a fine of $1,000 plus a $135 victim surcharge. The charges are the first related to COVID-19 under the Quarantine Act for the Rainy River District.
Canadian authorities say that while residents are under quarantine order, there is no exception to leave quarantine until the 14 days are complete. Any goods and services must be delivered to the location of quarantine during the 14 days if required.
Canada imposed the strict quarantine on residents returning to the country March 25 to slow the spread of COVID-19 at about the same time the U.S. and Canada closed their border to all personal travel. That travel ban remains in effect until at least June 22 and is expected to be extended to July 22.