Police break up cross-border lockdown party near Ghent
Friday, 18 December 2020
A Belgian and 21 French people were caught having a lockdown party in a rented Airbnb near Ghent on Thursday night, the public prosecutor’s office of East Flanders announced.
Police learned of the party after checking a car with French licence plates in Melle (in the province of East Flanders) around 1:30 AM. The five French nationals admitted they were going to a party, the prosecutor’s office said.
At the Airbnb, 15 people were found inside the house, and another seven people were found in the garden, according to the public prosecutor’s office.
The 18-year-old Frenchman who had rented the Airbnb was arrested and was immediately summoned to a hearing on 27 January, while the other participants were fined €750 each.
Those fines are three times as high as they used to be, after the college of public prosecutors decided on Tuesday to raise them to suppress a “clear disregard” for the rules as many lockdown parties have been broken up in Belgium as of late.
One of those also involved a cross-border situation in which over 50 people, all of them French, were caught having a sex party in a vacation house opposite a hospital in Virton (in the province of Luxembourg).