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Six Britons among 89 foreigners fined for breaking COVID rules at Thai party

Written by on 28/01/2021

Dozens of foreigners who violated coronavirus regulations by attending a party at a bar on an island in Thailand have received fines and a suspended jail sentence.

Police raided the Three Sixty Bar on Koh Phangan on Tuesday night where they arrested 89 foreigners, including six British people.

Twenty-two Thais, including the bar’s owner and another who sold drinks there were also arrested, said police colonel Suparerk Pankosol, superintendent of the provincial immigration office.

In this Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021, Thai immigration officers talk to people at a bar on Koh Phangan island, Surat Thani province, southern Thailand. Police raided a party at a bar on a popular resort island in southern Thailand and arrested 89 foreigners for violating coronavirus regulations, officials said Wednesday. Pic: AP
Image: Everyone who attended the party has been fined. Pic: AP

Officers told Sky News the customers, including the 20 Thais, received a 4,000 baht fine (£98) and a one-month jail sentence, suspended for one year.

Police Colonel Panya Nirattimanon, superintendent of Phangan police station, said the bar owner and drink seller were both fined 10,000 baht (£244) and given a two-year jail sentence, suspended for one year.

The gathering was illegal under a national state of emergency declared last March to combat the coronavirus.

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Those arrested were from more than 10 countries, including the US, Britain, Switzerland and Denmark.

Photos of the raid distributed by police showed a dark, crowded room with casually dressed partygoers, almost all wearing face masks.

Koh Phangan, in Surat Thani province, is a popular destination for young backpacking travellers and is known especially for its all-night Full Moon beach parties.

Koh Phangan, Thailand
Image: Koh Phangan is a popular destination for young backpacking travellers. File pic

However, Thailand has barred virtually all tourists from entering the country since last April.

There have been 29 confirmed COVID-19 cases in Surat Thani out of a national total of 15,465.

However, 11 of the 29 cases have been found in the last month as Thailand experienced a resurgence of the disease.

Col Pankosol said police had tracked the party plans on social media, where the bar was promoting the event to celebrate its fifth anniversary. Entry tickets were 100 baht (£2.44), with food and drink extra.

 Sky News

© Sky News 2020

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