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VIDEO: Boat party organiser admits breaking Covid rules

News   •   May 03, 2021 16:00 BST

[Approximately 30 people were found to have been at the party]

A man has pleaded guilty to breaking Covid rules after he threw a boat party during the pandemic.

Jordy Nicholas Van Duijvenbode, 31 (19.07.89), of no fixed address, pleaded guilty at Stratford Magistrates’ Court on Friday 30 April, after approximately 30 people gathered for a party on a house boat in Hackney.

Police received several calls in the early hours of Saturday, 13 February to reports of a large number of people playing music on a boat on the River Lea between Tottenham Lock and Hackney. Officers responded and located the boat off Hackney Marshes at approximately 04:20hrs.

Van Duijvenbode was identified as the organiser and, on Sunday, 14 February, charged under the Health Protection Regulations with one count of holding a gathering of more than 30 people. He was also charged with one count of participating in a gathering of two or more people. The second charge relates to an incident earlier in February.

He first appeared at Thames Magistrates' Court on Tuesday, 2 March and was bailed to appear for trial at Stratford Magistrates' Court on Friday, 30 April. Today he pled guilty.

He will be sentenced at the same court on Friday, 4 June.

Acting Chief Inspector Pete Shaw, responsible for the Met's response to Covid policing in central east London, said: “We are still in a pandemic, and restrictions are in place to keep our families, friends and communities safe.

“Van Duijvenbode clearly thought that holding gatherings was more important than the safety of others. He and everyone who attended his events put others’ lives in danger.

“We will continue to take action against those who think they are above the law and pose a risk to our communities with this sort of reckless behaviour.

“Thankfully, Van Duijvenbode is part of a selfish minority. Many people across London have put huge chunks of their own lives on hold as they do their bit to follow the guidance and reduce Covid infections. The large majority have behaved admirably and I hope they are proud of themselves for helping fight this health crisis.”