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More than 250 fined and 47 arrests made at Sydney protests

Published: (Updated: ) in Australian News by .

Police have managed to get the upper hand against thousands of protesters in Sydney’s CBD, after creating a ring of steel around the outskirts of the city.

A man who allegedly assaulted a police officer is among the 47 arrests made during today's lockdown protests in Sydney.

NSW Police issued more than 260 infringement notices as they stamped out a mass anti-lockdown protest in the CBD.

NSW Police Minister David Elliott thanked the 1500 officers who turned up ahead of today's anti-lockdown demonstration, slamming the protesters as a "disgrace".

"The actions they have taken are likely to prolong the very lockdown they were protesting about," Mr Elliott said.

"More than 200 infringement notices have been issued today with more than 250 people choosing to put their and their loved ones lives at risk at these protests."

READ MORE: Violent clashes as police move on lockdown protesters in Melbourne

Sydney anti-lockdown protests, Saturday August 21, 2021

Mr Elliott said while police issued fines and made arrests over an array of different offences, the majority of these were for failing to wear a mask.

One man was charged over allegedly assaulting police, dragging the officer out onto the road during the demonstration.

Mr Elliott said 38,000 cars were stopped from entering Sydney's CBD at various access points and roughly 130 tickets were issued to drivers.

"These orders are not a restriction on freedom of speech, they are a temporary restriction on freedom of movement.

"Please be aware there will again be plenty of police ready to deploy in response to any protest 2.0 planned for tomorrow and if people try to protest next weekend, we will do it all over again.

"Police will not hesitate to take the same action they took at today's protest."

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The large crowds dissipated just after 2pm today after concerns more were on the way to join the mass demonstration.

Police were well prepared after anti-lockdown protests last month resulted in thousands of fines and several arrests.

The delayed march started at Victoria Park on Broadway just after midday, as dozens of protesters made their way to the event despite police warnings those in attendance would be subject to "the full force of the law".

READ MORE: Record coronavirus case spike for Sydney

Police arrest protestors at Victoria Park in Sydney.A man is held by police on Broadway, Sydney.

Police created a "ring of steel" around the CBD ahead of the 12pm start time, yet several arrests were still made by officers around the Victoria Park site.

There appeared to be some violent clashes similar to last month's chaotic scenes.

However, the scale of today's protest was not as large as last month, where some 3000 people were fined.

Taxis and Ubers were banned from taking people into the area until 3pm.

Massive fines of up to half a million dollars for a company are in place, though people travelling for work or medical reasons are allowed to go.

READ MORE: Violence as police clash with protesters in Melbourne

Police arrest protestors at Victoria Park in Sydney.Police arrest Anti lockdown protesters at Victoria Park, Sydney.

Despite that, people were seen walking to Victoria Park where the protest was planned to start from - despite police issuing repeated warnings all week not to attend.

9News reporter Lauren Tomasi said "a lot" of people had turned up and they were "angry".

She said dozens of people have been arrested.

A woman surrounded by police near Victoria Park, Sydney.

NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller called the response "significant" and said anybody trying to get into the city to protest would be turned back and could be fined.

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"It is quite clear through messaging that has been sent to people that it is not an authorised gathering," he said. New South Wales police helicopter patrols the sky over the central business district in Sydney.Police setup a road block to check road users identification on Enmore Road, Sydney.

"It isn't what the vast majority want to see in the state, people coming together in that proximity in those numbers."

Protests are also underway in Melbourne and Brisbane.

The CBD boundaries used by police extended far out of the area.

The CBD zone is bounded on the west by West Link Road and The Crescent at Lilyfield, the south at South Dowling Street and Todman Avenue at Zetland, as far north as the Bradfield Highway at Milsons Point and the east at New South Head Road and Ocean Avenue at Edgecliff.

NSW Police perform roadside checks along the City West Link at Lilyfield, Sydney.Police setup a road block to check road users identification on Enmore Road, Sydney.

Central Metropolitan Region Commander, Assistant Commissioner Peter Thurtell, said more than 1500 officers had been deployed "to disrupt, prevent and respond to any unauthorised protest activity."

READ MORE: Sydney man charged with making threats to police horses after anti-lockdown protests

"The transmission of the Delta strain of COVID-19 presents a clear and present threat to the community. Now is not the time to gather in groups in protest," Assistant Commissioner Thurtell said.

Police setup at Victoria Park, Sydney.NSW Police assemble for a meeting in Hyde Park.

"This prohibition notice is just one of our strategies to prevent any unlawful mass gathering and keep our community safe."

On Friday, NSW Police Minister David Elliott warned anyone who plans to attend the illegal protest will feel the "full force of the law".

He urged people not to put their family, friends, and loved ones at risk by gathering in large groups.

NSW Police are seen patrolling Circular Quay.

READ MORE: Police seeking Sydney protesters after pot plants thrown at officers

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"The message to the people of NSW is stay indoors," Mr Elliott said.

"If you want to go out tomorrow and endanger the lives of everyone you love and extend this lockdown go ahead and meet the full force of the law.

Anti-lockdown protest  on 24 July, 2021. Photo: Brook MitchellSydney lockdown protests.

"It's not rocket science… you go outside you risk the prolonging of the lockdown."

READ MORE: PM labels lockdown protests as 'selfish'

NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Mal Lanyon echoed Mr Elliott, saying gatherings need to be capped at two people.

Deputy Commissioner Lanyon said more than 60 charges and 300 infringements were handed out since the last protest.

Source: 9News

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