After last month’s illegal raves mired nearby Manchester in controversy, Staffordshire police aren’t taking any chances. They’ve detained three men who allegedly planned an events for this past weekend that would violate COVID-19 restrictions.
The organizers’ ages are 21, 24 and 28 and they hail from Darlaston, Rugeley and Smethwick respectively. They were arrested on charges of conspiring to cause a public nuisance per the Derby Telegraph. Two are out on bail with a curfew, but the third remains in custody for questioning.
“We want to warn young people of the significant risks posed by such events and keep our communities safe,” said Staffordshire Police Chief Carl Ratcliffe. “To those thinking about attending or organizing such events – you will face enforcement action and could receive a criminal record. Do not go to illegal raves and risk your lives.”
After two gatherings in Manchester collectively drew 6,000, industry experts predicted a summer of illegal raves. Not long afterwards, Mayor Andy Burnham promised a “stronger, more robust” response to future violations in a YouTube video. As long ago as June 13th, events with roughly 1,000 in attendance have sprung up in other parts of the U.K. despite restrictions imposed to curb the spread of COVID-19.
The crackdown is a continuation of a June 20th bust where 13 were arrested to prevent a rave from going ahead as planned in Fradley.
Image credit: Dawid Łabno