Sydney crackdown, 70,000 cars checked

1300 police deployed in Sydney have blocked protests and maintained compliance with health rules.
1300 police deployed in Sydney have blocked protests and maintained compliance with health rules.

Over 250 fines have been issued for straying beyond local government areas after more than 70,000 vehicle checks as part of a massive police operation to thwart lockdown protesters entering central Sydney.

Deputy Commissioner Mick Willing says the deployment of 1300 officers in and around the city's CBD stopped a repeat of last weekend "potential mass seeding incident" involving an estimated 3500 demonstrators.

Eight people were arrested as police enforced an exclusion zone around the precinct, while taxi and rideshare companies were banned from entering the city under the threat of heavy fines.

Mr Willing said on Sunday the operation was ongoing across greater Sydney throughout the weekend and anyone contemplating protest type activity would be dealt with.

More broadly, police have also launched a COVID compliance crackdown as cases continue to spread across households, around workplaces and into aged care facilities.

NSW recorded 239 locally acquired infections in the 24 hours to 8pm on Saturday.

While 115 are linked to a known case or cluster, 92 are household contacts and 23 close contacts, the source of infection for 124 cases is under investigation.

Mr Willing said police had issued 516 infringement notices and made 38 arrests relating to breaches of public health orders in the 24 hours to Sunday. Officers had responded to almost 1800 COVID-related jobs in total.

Disappointingly, a number of people had been involved in unauthorised gatherings.

"We will not tolerate them," he said.

"I cannot stress enough how important it is for you to remain within your LGA."

Five men were charged with assaulting officers and resisting arrest during a compliance check in Sydney's west at Oakhurst on Saturday afternoon.

The group were found drinking inside a garage and were asked to produce identification but allegedly refused.

When told they were in possible breach of COVID restrictions a 44-year-old man pushed an officer in the chest and four others aged in their 30s became violent and attempted to hinder his arrest, police said.

OC spray was used to subdue the men who've been charged with a range of offences including non-compliance, resisting arrest and assaulting police.

They'll appear in Mt Druitt Local Court later this month.

Mr Willing said police would continue to clamp down on compliance around QR codes and the wearing of face masks at shopping centres and large retail stores.

Businesses failing to comply with the QR checking system will be fined $5000, while people who don't check in or wear a face mask will be fined up to $1000.

A contingent of 300 Australian Defence Force personnel will join police as they enforce rules in eight western and southwestern Sydney council areas from Monday.

Australian Associated Press