The woman who gained viral notoriety for escaping hotel quarantine to party in Makati's hip Poblacion district and later testing positive for COVID will face a criminal complaint that has a maximum penalty of jail time, police said.
Gwyneth Chua and eight others, including her father, mother and several personnel of Berjaya Hotel will be charged with violation of Mandatory Reporting of Notifiable Diseases and Health Events of Public Health Concern Act.
State prosecutors will determine of the police complaint has enough evidence to warrant elevating the case to the courts for trial. Those guilty of violating the said law could be fined P20,000 to P50,000 or be imprisoned for one to six months.
Chua was transported to Berjaya Hotel for quarantine and checked in at 11:23 p.m. of Dec. 22, 2021, but was fetched by her father at 11:40 p.m., the police Criminal Investigation and Detection Group said.
Her presence in one of the restaurants at Poblacion was confirmed through CCTV footage and eyewitness accounts, according to the CIDG. It was only at 9 p.m. on Dec. 25 that she returned to the hotel assisted by her mother.
Chua later turned out positive for COVID-19 and infected four of her 15 close contacts, the Department of Health said. Police did not charge those who were with the woman at the bar.
The woman is currently being isolated in a quarantine facility in Metro Manila.
"Let this be a lesson for each and every one of our fellow Filipinos. The pandemic is still at bay and we still need to be cautious in our actions," said CIDG director Police Maj. Gen. Albert Ignatius Ferro.
"This is proof that the procedures and policies set by the IATF, especially on quarantine and isolation is vital for securing the welfare and wellness of the people. And everyone must adhere to the established protocols," he added.