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Pattaya Karaoke bar raided afterhours for violating Covid-19 rules

Neill Fronde

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PHOTO: Jacky Karaoke bar in Pattaya was raided for Covid-19 violations. (via Pattaya News)

A karaoke bar in Pattaya flagrantly ignoring all Covid-19 regulations was raided by police last night as more than 50 people drank and partied inside. Police raided Jacky Karaoke around 11:30 pm last night after receiving an anonymous tip from someone reported to be worried about the illegal venue spreading Covid-19 in their area.

The karaoke bar, located on Soi Chalerm Phrakiat 35 in Nong Prue, should not even be open as all karaoke bars, along with other types of bars, pubs, nightclubs and entertainment venues have been ordered to close since April. But the government has left a wide loophole allowing venues to operate as so-called restaurants by adding a food item or two to their menu. Even then, all restaurants selling alcohol have to stop serving by 9 pm.

Police said that they saw no indication of any Covid-19 safety procedures or regulations in place at the karaoke bar, with attendees drinking, partying, and dancing without any social distancing or mask-wearing. Loud music was playing in a club-like setting with alcohol being served long past the drinking curfew. Plus, new regulations required that rapid antigen tests be given to all customers before entering a venue and no evidence was seen of that having been done.

The Pattaya Police Chief personally led the raid that found more than 50 people violating Covid-19 rules, many of them domestic tourists that had travelled from out of town, increasing the danger and likelihood of the karaoke bar to spread Covid-19 in Pattaya and beyond.

A 48 year old man was named as the manager of the karaoke bar and was arrested on the spot. He was transported to the Pattaya City Police Station where he was interrogated and is facing charges for violation of the Emergency Decree and the rules set by the Chon Buri Communicable Disease Committee, though authorities have been famously lax in handing out punishment, if any is given at all. There was no word if any of the attendees are facing any charges.

Police have been cracking down on “restaurants” for breaking rules and curfew since new national orders went into effect Sunday to battle the surging Covid-19 and Omicron variant infections plaguing Thailand now.

SOURCE: The Pattaya News

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    Neill is a journalist from the United States with 10 years broadcasting experience and national news and magazine publications. He graduated with a degree in journalism and communications from the University of California and has been living in Thailand since 2014.

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