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Couple Arrested After Escaping Quarantine Hotel Forced Into Intense Isolation At Hospital

by : Poppy Bilderbeck on :
Couple Arrested After Escaping Quarantine Hotel Forced Into Intense Isolation At HospitalAlamy/@cpimentalopes/Twitter

A couple has been forced to quarantine in conditions ‘worse than a prison’ after they ran away from an isolation hotel. 

On Friday, November 26, Carolina Pimenta flew from South Africa to the Netherlands, however she tested positive for coronavirus upon touching down.

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The Portuguese woman and her Spanish partner, Andrés Sanz, were later detained at Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam on Sunday, November 28, after they tried to fly to Spain.

They have since been forced into isolation in an infectious diseases hospital, accusing the Dutch authorities of subjecting them to ‘nightmare’ conditions.

Couple Forced Isolation After Escaping Quarantine Hotel (Alamy) Alamy

According to BBCthe biochemical researcher took a PCR test prior to flying, which came back negative, only getting a positive result after touching down.

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The flight, which was carrying 624 passengers from South Africa to Amsterdam, saw 61 travellers test positive for coronavirus. The new strain was later found in at least 14 passengers.

Pimenta’s partner tested negative both times, however, the pair wanted to stay together. From the airport’s terminal they were sent 10 minutes away to the Ramada hotel to isolate.

The pair later left the hotel after Pimenta suspected that her positive result was inaccurate, claiming to have tested negative on a lateral flow. However, they were intercepted by military on the plane to Spain and held under an emergency order.

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The pair are now being held in a tuberculosis hospital in Haren, a town in the north of Amsterdam.

Pimenta stated:

Last night the sewage overflowed in our bathroom. Now they tell us I have to wait and do another PCR test tomorrow. This is worse than a prison.

It’s like they are waiting until I get sick to prove they are right. We went on a dream holiday in Africa and now we are living a nightmare. We are watching the world say we are criminals with a story that is just a lie. We feel alone and abandoned.

The couple’s lawyer, Bart Maes, called the treatment of the pair ‘shameful’.

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‘[The authorities] want to show how powerful they are but that’s not how you deal with people in a civilised country,’ he said.

Couple Forced Isolation After Escaping Quarantine Hotel (Alamy) Alamy
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Maes is subsequently seeking compensation for the couple, who he doesn’t think are currently facing any criminal charges.

He doesn’t believe that the pair deserve to be detained any longer, since Sanz has continued to test negative, and despite the positive test upon landing, Pimenta testing negative twice on PCR and twice on lateral flow antigen tests.

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After having been ordered to quarantine for five days from Friday, November 26, Maes hopes to take the pair to the airport today, November 30.

He noted how contradictory he felt it was for the pair to have been moved around the country, intermingling with potentially hundreds of people and pointed out the ‘trouble’ there would be if the couple had tested positive for the latest COVID-19 variant, Omicron.

If you’ve been affected by coronavirus and want up to date advice, visit the Gov.uk help page here. If you need medical help call NHS 111 or visit online

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Topics: News, Amsterdam, COVID-19, Now, Omicron

Credits

BBC
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