Police drone reveals 300 illegal ravers flouting lockdown rules

Police thermal-imaging drone reveals more than 200 illegal ravers in Birmingham – while officers are pelted with missiles as they break up Manchester street party

  • The illegal gathering come as coronavirus infections in Birmingham skyrocketed
  • West Midlands Police busted the huge DJ-led block party in the city centre Friday
  • Drone images show the Covidiots partying hard into the early hours of Saturday 
  • It came as yet another street party saw police pelted with missiles in Manchester

Shocking images show more than 300 revellers flouting restrictions by holding raves for the second weekend in a row in Birmingham.

The illegal gatherings come as coronavirus cases in the city have rocketed from 13.8 per 100,000 people to 28.1.

West Midlands Police busted the huge DJ-led block party in the city centre on Friday night.

Drone images show the large groups of revellers partying hard into the early hours of Saturday.

It came as another illegal street party saw police pelted with missiles as they tried to break up the event in Manchester. 

The illegal gatherings come as coronavirus cases in the city have rocketed from 13.8 per 100,000 people to 28.1

Superintendent Jack Hadley shared pictures from the drone and video from ground level of the rave which he said created a ‘huge amount of rubbish’.

He tweeted: ‘Op. Reliant officers have attended more than 80 incidents of large gatherings and unlicensed music events where people are flaunting covid regulations and causing significant disruption to the communities around them.

‘Such selfish behaviours will not be tolerated.

‘Our @WMPolice drone is gathering evidence to allow us to prosecute the organiser of this illegal music event.

West Midlands Police busted the huge DJ-led block party in the city centre which took place on Friday night

‘This type of behaviour is dangerous and will not be tolerated! Officers are disrupting yet another ‘block party’ in Birmingham, 200 people crammed into communal area with sound systems.

‘A huge amount of rubbish has been left at this illegal music event in Hampton Street.

‘Complete and utter disregard for other people who may need to use this car park tomorrow!’

West Midlands Police Chief Constable Dave Thompson added: ‘Once again very grateful to staff dealing with unlicensed events under #operationreliant.

‘There is no place for these in a pandemic and they stop officers dealing with other calls for people in need.’

The raves come a week after police busted 125 separate parties which took place across the city.

Pictures show the large groups of revellers partying hard into the early hours of Saturday

Superintendent Jack Hadley shared pictures from the drone and video from ground level of the rave which he said created a ‘huge amount of rubbish’

Greater Manchester Police said officers were forced to call for significant back-up as they dealt with large gatherings for the second night running in the city.

The disorder on Saturday night in the Gorton area of Manchester followed large gatherings in the Wilmslow Road area of the city on Friday.

GMP’s Deputy Chief Constable Ian Pilling said objects were thrown at officers as they attempted to intervene to stop a party in Harlow Drive, Gorton.

DCC Pilling said: ‘Despite having significant number of GMP officers on duty, supported by officers from North Wales and Cheshire, we were extremely stretched again yesterday with unprecedented demand.

‘The last thing we need is large gatherings such as this, as well as unacceptable attacks on officers attending the scene.

‘Quite frankly, it is beyond comprehension and I am incredibly disappointed that people feel they can gather in this way – blatantly flouting the rules.

‘I can honestly say that in 30 years of policing I have never seen anything quite as outrageous as this behaviour. It is appalling.’

The senior officer added: ‘We are still in the midst of a global pandemic and over 40,000 people have lost their lives.

‘Greater Manchester is specifically affected to the extent we have a local lockdown and many places still have a rising infection rate. People behaving in this way are contributing to an already difficult situation.’

Officers are now reviewing footage of the Gorton incident and all options are being considered with regards to prosecution.

‘GMP owes it to our communities to not tolerate this kind of behaviour,’ Mr Pilling said.

Friday’s street gatherings on Pakistan Independence Day were condemned by Manchester Gorton MP Afzal Khan, who said he was disappointed, frustrated and angry at the ‘appalling’ behaviour of those present.

The MP tweeted: ‘Not only is antisocial behaviour of this kind deeply disrespectful to Rusholme residents, ignoring the Covid-19 regulations puts us all at risk.’

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