Police are warning that failure to comply with government directions related to the fight against coronavirus - including venturing into the community while you should be self-isolating or being involved in mass gatherings - is a criminal offence.
Hunter police had not handed out any fines as of Tuesday afternoon under the new restrictions targeting COVID-19, after extra measures were brought into force across the state on Monday.
But a coronavirus "incident reporting option" has been added to the Crime Stoppers website.
"The NSW Health minister has made a number of directions under the Public Health Act, which require people to self-isolate if they are returned travellers, to not conduct or attend mass gatherings, to observe social distancing and to close particular premises," a NSW Police spokeswoman said.
"Failure to comply with these directions is a criminal offence - maximum penalty is $11,000 [or] six months imprisonment."
Even before the tighter restrictions were brought in, the region's police had been dealing with cases of people required to self-isolate not complying.
Newcastle Police issued a warning on Friday night, saying they had already acted on tips that some people were ignoring the requirements and that they were "not a choice".
"If you become aware of friends, family or someone known to you thinking they can sneak out, call them out," police said on social media.
"There are no excuses. Please support your friends and loved ones, and if they need help while self-isolating, lend a hand and be kind."
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