Runner blasts ‘Covid Officer’ who fined him £120 for ‘sweating’ during a jog

A runner says he's been fined £120 for sweating by a "Covid Officer".

Mark Meghezzi, 30, hit out after the council worker accused him of spitting when he blew perspiration from his mouth.

He was slapped with the fixed penalty notice (FPN) while waiting at a traffic light crossing on Tuesday.

Hounslow council leader Cllr Steve Curran said the Enforcement Officer in Chiswick, west London, had acted under anti-littering regulations.

Mark, originally from Aberdeen, wrote online: "Is this really what it has come to?

"(London Mayor) Sadiq Khan I can't imagine this is how you intended these resources to be deployed.

"I received a fine from Sadiq Khan's London Borough of Hounslow for doing nothing more than going for a run down Chiswick High Road.

"I paused at Turnham Green Terrace and went down on my haunches (it was a tough one) and waited for the traffic lights to turn green.

"As I did so, naturally the sweat poured off me and I blew some away from my lip, towards the road. This is natural and unavoidable when running.

"I was then accosted by a very excited young 'Covid Officer' who advised me that I had been 'observed spitting' and who then very eagerly issued me with the £120 FPN in the picture."

The university management graduate carried on: "I stood back (mostly in shock) after receiving the FPN from this 'officer'.

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"I observed him repeat his truck twice more with passing joggers and cyclists, stopped at the lights.

"Needless to say this FPN will not be being paid and a complaint has been raised against the individual for their conduct in issuing it."

Cllr Curran told Mail Online: "The Fixed Penalty Notice was not given for any Covid offence or sweating, and nor was it issued by a Covid marshal. The notice was issued by an Enforcement Officer for spitting, which is a littering offence.

"Officers tackle a wide range of offences to tackle environmental and anti-social behaviour to support the local community. All of our officers are provided with body-worn cameras that capture interactions between staff and members of the public.

"Details of why a Fixed Penalty Notice was issued is provided on the notice along with details of a representative process that allows for notices to be reviewed."

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