Vic cops warn would-be lockdown protesters

Victorian Police say anyone caught on the street protesting could be fined or arrested.
Victorian Police say anyone caught on the street protesting could be fined or arrested.

Would-be protesters planning to march against Melbourne's stage four lockdown can expect to face the full force of police if the event goes ahead.

In a statement on Thursday, Victoria Police said it was aware some "selfish" people may be planning to protest in Melbourne's CBD on Sunday.

A Facebook event to protest the Melbourne shutdown intends to "fill up the streets to show these criminals we won't give up our country and livelihoods without a fight".

It has attracted more than 100 confirmed attendees and almost 400 expressions of interest.

The event description suggests another three marches being promoted online are part of the same movement.

Should the march proceed, police said it would constitute a "completely blatant breach" of the chief health officer's directions and put Victorians' lives at risk.

"This selfish behaviour will absolutely not be tolerated," police said in a statement.

"Be assured Victoria Police will be responding and will take appropriate action.

"There will be a highly visible presence in and around the city to ensure the community is complying with stage four restrictions."

They warned anyone caught on the street protesting could be issued on-the-spot fines of $1,652 or arrested if necessary.

The organisers of the event may also face disciplinary action, with police seeking to track them down.

But police have promised a common-sense approach to enforcing worker permits that are now in place with the stage-four lockdown, provided people do not try to rort the system.

Meanwhile, another person refusing to wear a mask fought off officers as they arrested her in Victoria.

Police in Geelong saw the 25-year-old woman on Monday afternoon and she allegedly repeatedly refused to provide her identify when asked.

When they attempted to arrest her, she allegedly became aggressive and assaulted them, with the two officers receiving minor injuries to their arms and hands.

The woman was charged with assaulting police, resisting police, failing to provide an address and fined $200 for breaching coronavirus directions.

Victoria Police released details of the arrest on Thursday after repeated incidents of people not wearing masks and refusing to co-operate with officers, including a 26-year-old policewoman's head being smashed into concrete by an anti-masker in Frankston.

Another 176 fines for breaching the coronavirus restrictions were issued in the 24 hours to Thursday morning, including:

* 51 for failing to wear a face covering

* Seven at vehicle checkpoints, with 20,612 vehicles checked

* 55 for curfew breaches

* 4938 spot checks on people at homes, businesses and public places

Food continued to be a downfall for people breaching the lockdown.

Three men and a woman were caught breaching curfew while sitting on a footpath eating McDonald's and a man bought snacks at 2.30am at a convenience store.

Australian Associated Press