U.S. man fined $1,000, sent home after taking boat to B.C. to pick up girlfriend
Boundary Bay between Surrey and Delta is seen in this file photo. (CTV)
VANCOUVER -- An American man from Bellingham, Wash. has been fined $1,000 after navigating his boat into Canadian waters to pick up his girlfriend in Surrey, B.C., according to RCMP.
Mounties announced the Quarantine Act violation in a news release Wednesday. They said the incident that led to the fine happened on Sunday.
RCMP said officers with the Federal Border Integrity ShipRider Program were patrolling the marine border between the U.S. and Canada when they encountered a Bellingham-registered vessel anchored in the Crescent Beach Channel near Blackie Spit, off the coast of Surrey.
There were two people aboard the Seasport cabin cruiser, according to police: A 49-year-old American man from Bellingham and a 50-year-old woman from Surrey.
Police said the man left his home port that morning and picked up his girlfriend at Elgin Park Marina. He had not reported his crossing into Canada and did not meet the requirements for an exemption to the Quarantine Act that would allow him to enter the country, according to police.
After consulting with the Canada Border Services Agency, police arrested the man and seized his vessel, which they searched. The search "confirmed that the trip was simply personal in nature and no other criminality was involved," police said.
Police said they issued a $1,000 fine for contravening the Quarantine Act and released the man without further charges. The man also had to pay an additional $1,000 for the return of his boat and was required to leave Canada immediately, police said.
RCMP said the woman was taken to Crescent Beach Marina, where "she obtained a ride back to her vehicle." Police said she planned to self-isolate for 14 days and get tested for COVID-19 if any symptoms develop.