B.C. government seeks advice on possible next steps for COVID-19 rule-breakers

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B.C. government seeking advice on potential further steps for COVID-19 rule-breakers
B.C.'s Minister of Public Safety confirms he is looking into what further steps can be taken when police are refused entry to calls involving COVID-19 rule-breakers. This comes after police were called for the fourth time to a Vancouver high-rise for reports of a party but police said he wouldn't open the door. Rumina Daya reports. – Jan 26, 2021

An alleged party in the sky at a luxury Vancouver penthouse on Saturday was operating as a makeshift nightclub, Vancouver police said.

The department confirmed officers handed out $2,500 in COVID-19 related fines to a 40-year-old man at the door.
“He had a protective vest, a stab-proof vest, he was holding a counter like you would see somebody [with a] clicker, like at a nightclub or a bar and he did have several denominations of cash in his possession,” Sgt. Steve Addison with the Vancouver police said Tuesday.

Police said a woman, who had been invited to the party called 911, reporting approximately 100 people inside.

The VPD said it’s the fourth complaint this month about social gatherings in the unit and added they believe they have identified the owner but he refused to open the door.

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Read more: Coronavirus: Big fines for Vancouver man caught turning home into a makeshift nightclub

Click to play video: 'Vancouver man jailed on Christmas Day for violation of ban on social gatherings'
Vancouver man jailed on Christmas Day for violation of ban on social gatherings

“We did not have the authority to go into the suite and it definitely would not have been the best choice for us to force our way into a suite when there are potentially hundreds of people inside or 100 people inside,” Addison said.

“It could create more of a conflict than we’re able to deal with.”

B.C.’s Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth said Tuesday his ministry has been in contact with Vancouver police and he is seeking advice on what can be done when police are refused entry on calls involving COVID rule breakers.

No social gatherings of any size inside a residence with anyone other than your household or core bubble are allowed under the current Provincial Health Orders.

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That order remains in effect until midnight on Feb. 5, 2021.

The owner of the penthouse is Mo Movassaghi. Global News made multiple requests but Movassaghi has refused to answer specific questions about how many people were in his suite.

In an email, Movassaghi said he filed a complaint against the VPD.

-with files from Rumina Daya

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