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29 arrested in Pattaya for smoking shisha above Indian restaurant

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PHOTO: Pattaya Soi 7 - YouTube

Police are investigating an Indian restaurant where they arrested 29 people for a late night party in Pattaya’s Soi 7. The incident took place at 12:30am at a 5 story building which had the first 3 floors closed. Police say the venue was actually operating as a shisha lounge, pool hall, and bar.

The raid was based on a tip from an undercover officer who had previously confirmed the location was open and operating. When police entered the building, they found 29 people either smoking shisha, or hookah pipes, while others were playing pool, or snooker. Police say they found 18 hookah pipes (as distinct from 18 hookers).

In Thailand, shisha and hookah is illegal. 11 foreigners from India, Cambodia, and other countries were found at the venue. The remainder were Thai nationals. All 29 were arrested and taken to the Pattaya Police station where they will face charges under the Emergency Decree Act, the Communicable Disease Act and possession of an illegal substance.

Police say they don’t know who owned or managed the venue and they claimed many of the people present were “playing dumb” in terms of how they knew about the venue or who was responsible for it. Police say they will be interrogating and interviewing those arrested today to determine who should be held responsible. They also seized documents from offices on the top floor relating to ownership.

Pattaya is a “highly controlled” zone as set by the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration, which sees it under the toughest rules in the country in order to curb the spreading of Covid infections. Chonburi has seen 0 new cases in the past 3 days, sparking anticipation from residents and business owners for the strict measures to relax.  Health authorities say they will review the measures at the end of the month, but are not promising to make a change.

SOURCE: The Pattaya News

 

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