Police shut down illegal night club, issued pandemic fines in New Westminster, B.C.

FILE - New Westminster police are searching for two suspects alleged to have robbed a teenager at knife point on March 4, 2022 around 3:30 p.m. Handout/New Westminster Police Department

Police shut down an illegal night club and issued $575 in pandemic-related fines to an event organizer in New Westminster, B.C. last month.

According to a Monday news release, officers were conducting regular patrols in the downtown neighbourhood when they found a large party in the 400-block of Front Street.

Inside the venue, they found about 150 guests who were not wearing masks or physically distancing. Some were on a dance floor, they noted, and open liquor was being served.

Read more: COVID-19: B.C. to ban indoor organized events, shut nightclubs, and keep home gatherings small

New Westminster police said they shut down the event “without issue” and issued fines under B.C.’s COVID-19 Related Measures Act.

“This appears to have been an illegal nightclub,” said Sgt. Sanjay Kumar in the release. “We want everyone to know that public health orders are still in place and still being enforced. These orders are in place to protect public health.”

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Under the province’s current provincial health orders, bars, nightclubs and lounges that do not serve meals are not permitted to operate. Dancing is not permitted in any venue and masks are required at all times when guests are not seated.

The measures were put in place late last year to curb the spread of the Omicron variant of COVID-19.

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