Friday, May 04, 2007

Vauxhall, Vietnam and other Parties

Last weekend saw hundreds of police on the dancefloor from Vauxhall to Vietnam…

1000+ arrests at Vietnam nightclub

More than 500 police raided Ha Noi’s New Century nightclub in the wee hours of Saturday morning, seizing a large amount of illegal narcotics, from amphetamines to heroin, and detaining around 1,160 people for drug testing. Police also caught couples having sex on the premises and found used condoms. Of the first 600 persons tested for drugs, 15 per cent were positive. By Saturday afternoon, more than 1,100 had been released while others remained in custody for further investigation, including New Century’s manager, Nguyen Dai Duong, and four women accused of drug-related offences. New Century, one of the most well-known nightclubs and discos in the northern region, has been in business for eight years. (Vietnam News , 2nd May 2007)

South London Gay club closed

"The Fire gay nightclub has been temporarily closed following a raid by Lambeth police in the early hours of Saturday morning. Witnesses claim hundreds of police were involved in the raid. Nine people were arrested in the raid that followed a three month long intelligence led operation into Class A drugs- codenamed Pivot. Officers armed with a search warrant raided the club in Vauxhall at 2:15 am on Saturday. Suspects are being held in a central London police station. The club which hosts A:M (taking place during the raid), Orange, Juicy and Rudeboyz has been temporarily shut down under the Misuse of Drugs Act. Supersluth wrote on DiscoDamaged (a clubbing blog), "The lights came on at 2am. We were then lined in in groups of 3 in the car park - had our pictures taken in the glory of spot lights jacked up on police vans, sniffer dogs have a good nose around our legs and escorted out onto the road where there were literally hundreds of police lining the closed off roads and railway bridge." (Pink News, 28th April 2007, Film footage here).

Bedfordshire party shut down

As many as 200 ravers found their illegal party short-lived in Caddington when police told them to go home. The revellers had set up a sound system at the Chaul End reservoir, Caddington, on Friday night but officers were soon on the site to kick them off after a neighbour's complaint. Police issued a section 63 notice under the Criminal Justice and Public Order act threatening to remove the expensive music equipment before the crowd dispersed (Luton Today, 2nd May 2007)

Squat party at Streatham Megabowl

Squatters used a derelict bowling alley to host an illegal rave last Saturday night. They entered the boarded up Megabowl building in Streatham Hill, south London, through a side door and revellers were charged £5 each to go in. Police were called out in the early hours of Sunday morning after complaints from residents. A spokesman said the squatters would be taken to court and should be evicted from the premises by the end of the week. The two-storey building, which closed in August, is earmarked for part of a new shopping mall and housing development stretching (This is Hertfordshire, 28 April 2007).

OK so it gets a bit tedious simply cataloguing police raids on clubs and parties across the world, but we’ll stick with it because it is interesting to identify patterns and differences, and the various reasons for turning off the music and turning on the sirens. Analysis to follow (one day...)

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