POLICE have fined nine people who drove from London to Hove "without a reasonable excuse", during the national coronavirus lockdown.

The Covid rulebreakers travelled in two cars from Croydon to Holland Road, Hove in the early hours of Sunday morning.

A neighbour witnessed the moment police stopped the group, and described them as “filth” who “didn’t have a mask between them”.

A photograph shows a police van blocking the car’s path, while an officer talks to the group in the street.

Sussex Police were alerted to the cars over "concerns for how they were being driven".

Each of the group received a fixed penalty notice.

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One resident in Holland Road, who wished to remain anonymous, said it was a "national disgrace".

He said: "Over 1000 people died yesterday and these filth didn't have a mask between them.

"It's a national disgrace, and the fine is clearly no deterrent whatsoever.

"It was freezing cold, driving conditions terrible, and I felt somewhat frustrated that our police have to put themselves at risk due to this dreadful behaviour when they have so much else to be getting on with.”

It comes days after a couple were fined for driving more than 120 miles to look at a seal colony in Norfolk.

This Is Local London: The nine Covid-rulebreakers traveled in two carsThe nine Covid-rulebreakers traveled in two cars

The current fine for breaching lockdown rules is £200 but police have been told to get tougher on rulebreakers, as more people continue to flout the rules.

A Sussex Police spokesman said: "Sussex Police attended Holland Road, Brighton, in the early hours of Sunday following concerns for how two vehicles were being driven.

"Officers engaged with the nine occupants in the vehicles and established the group were from Croydon and had travelled to Brighton without a reasonable excuse.

"Each of the occupants received a fixed penalty notice."