A Melbourne business owner and financial planner will face court accused of using fake driver’s licences to sneak into Perth to attend Saturday’s AFL grand final.
Prahran restaurant and bar owner Hayden Burbank, 49, and finance firm managing director Mark Babbage, 38, are alleged to have flown into Perth on September 22 after arriving in Darwin from Melbourne on September 14.
They were pictured posing inside the Optus Stadium change rooms on Saturday with Melbourne player Alex Neal-Bullen after the side’s drought-breaking premiership win.
The photo was posted on the AFL’s official Instagram account.
WA Police Commissioner Chris Dawson said they received an anonymous public tip-off that the men had been in Victoria 14 days before arriving in the state.
The pair were arrested at Bunker Bay in the state’s southwest on Tuesday morning after police issued a public appeal to track them down.
They spent the night in police custody and on Wednesday morning will face court charged with breaching the Emergency Management Act, which can attract fines of up to $50,000 and a maximum jail term of 12 months.
“How people could knowingly put others at risk in these times is selfish and contemptible,” Mr Dawson told reporters on Tuesday.
One of the men has tested negative for COVID-19 and the other’s result was inconclusive.
Mr Dawson said health authorities believed the initial result was a false positive and he will be retested overnight.
A woman, believed to be a WA resident, who was with Mr Burbank and Mr Babbage when they were arrested has also tested negative. She is unlikely to be charged.
Two other Victorian men also entered WA via South Australia for the AFL grand final. One has returned home to Melbourne, while the other has been arrested and faced Perth Magistrates Court on Tuesday.
He also returned a negative COVID-19 test result and will remain in custody until October 8.
“While we’ve got people charged with serious offences, there’s nothing at this point to indicate that it (the AFL grand final) has put the community at risk,” Mr Dawson said.