The owner of a Perth pub arrested for hosting a secret New Years party for 300 guests says he had no idea the celebrations were taking place.
Vinod Parihar, the sole manager of Jashan Tavern Pty Ltd, which holds the license for The George, said he plans to work with police to investigate the party.
Suspicious officers stormed the celebrations at the pub around 11:30 p.m. Friday and found nearly 300 revelers inside, many not wearing masks.
The George (pictured) in Perth’s CBD was pulled over by police officers who discovered hundreds of unmasked revelers flouting Covid restrictions on New Years Eve
“There are still a lot of unknowns, we have to work with the authorities to find out what went wrong,” Parihar told the Western Australia.
Under the state’s draconian rules on Covid, nightclubs are closed and dancing outside of weddings is banned in Perth and neighboring Peel until January 4.
Premier Mark McGowan has also decreed that masks must be worn indoors, spoiling New Year’s celebrations for thousands of people.
This despite only 12 cases of Covid recorded throughout the epidemic in nearly two weeks.
George Vinod Parihar owner (pictured) claimed he was unaware the illegal New Year’s party was taking place
Unlike most states with indoor mask warrants, this is included in licensed locations except when customers actually eat or drink, both of which must be seated.
Masks should generally only be worn when ordering at the bar or going to the bathroom in other states.
The event itself was not illegal under WA public health orders, but the party revelers were charged with breaking the rules of masking, dancing, and seated drinking.
Dramatic police body camera video showed the bust late at night after officers climbed the walls into the locked building.
Footage shows an officer pulling heavy black curtains hanging from glass doors as muffled dance music is heard during celebrations inside.
Western Australia Police Commissioner Chris Dawson said the pub was locked and black curtains covered the windows and glass doors.
“We are continuing to investigate this matter, but I must say at the outset that I am very disappointed with what I have been informed of,” he said.
âBlatant disregard, selfish behavior, it is true from the evidence here.
Suspicious officers on a city patrol broke into The George Hotel in Perth around 11:30 p.m. Friday (pictured), with dramatic body camera footage showing how the incident unfolded
âThe police present on the spot could not enter because the doors were locked and the windows were covered with black curtains obviously obscuring the vision of the outside.
âMy officers had to climb walls to enter and eventually enter through other doors.
“There appear to be several hundred people who were at The George at a licensed and paid event in licensed premises.”
WA police also allege the QR codes were ripped from the walls.
“They were found crumpled behind the bar,” said Dawson.
“The whole incident, we see a blatant disregard of not only the liquor licensing requirements, but we are in the midst of a pandemic, this is a state of emergency.”
A popular Perth pub has been locked up after police climbed a wall to find 300 New Years Eve revelers having a secret party in an alleged violation of Covid rules (Photo is an image of a policeman shooting a black curtain at The George hotel)
Mr Dawson said the operators of the George were facing “very serious charges” and questioned whether they were “suitable for a license”.
âWhat we’re also going to allege is – and I’ve had a vision of this from customers not wearing masks, dancing in licensed premises,â he said.
The licensee can be fined up to $ 250,000 for violating WA Emergency Management Act and losing his liquor license.
Under WA’s public health orders which took effect on December 23, nightclubs are temporarily banned in Perth and neighboring Peel region to the south (pictured, Premier Mark McGowan)
According to the owner and licensee of the company, Mr. Parihar also owns the CBD sites The Grand Bar and Bistro and The Deck CafÃ© and Bar Lounge.
The George featured a marble bar that served cocktails and finger foods on cutting boards.
Police Minister Paul Papalia confirmed on Saturday that a “major investigation” had been opened into the “irresponsible” and “shameful” party.
âThree hundred people breaking Covid protocols in the midst of a Delta outbreak in WAâ¦ this is an incredibly serious offense,â he said.
âIf all of this is proven, it is incredibly selfish and irresponsible. We are in the midst of a pandemic. There are sanitary guidelines … these people seem to have posted it all.
WA announced three new cases of Covid on January 1, including two linked to an unvaccinated French backpacker in Fremantle and another to a returning traveler.
WA upgraded Tasmania and the Australian Capital Territory from medium risk to high risk after both jurisdictions saw an increase in the number of cases.
Police in Western Australia allege QR codes were removed at the posh venue with a marble bar that serves cocktails and finger foods on cutting boards (in the photo, a policeman meets a lock-in)
This means that starting Monday, anyone entering the state from ACT or Tasmania must be fully vaccinated, take a PCR test within 24 hours of arrival, and take another test on day 12. of his 14-day self-isolation.
They should also use the G2G Now app when in quarantine.
More than 92% of Western Australians have received their first vaccine against Covid-19.
There are now 35 confirmed active cases in WA, while the rest of the country recorded 35,326 infections on New Years Day – the highest daily total on record.
Daily Mail Australia has contacted The George for comment.