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By Latrishka Thomas

Sixteen people were arrested at a Villa bar on Sunday and charged with breaching a number of Covid-related safety regulations.

Nine of the individuals – Ricardo Lake, Kenroy Wood, Ladanielle Hodge, Gabriella Howard, Curte Audain, Emanuel Beltrie, David Barnes, Curtis Ryan, and Nasser Hodge – pleaded guilty before St John’s Magistrate’s Court yesterday.

They were all indicted for failure to comply with restrictions on social gatherings, failure to comply with the curfew, and failure to wear facemasks at Dianne Bar. They were each fined $1,000 per charge, totalling $3,000 for each person.

However, Hodge was fined an additional $500 after he confessed to leaving work at 11pm and then heading to the bar.

The Hispanic woman, who owns the bar along with several other individuals, will appear in court on Wednesday.

While facemasks are not mandatory in bars while drinking, police spokesman Inspector Frankie Thomas clarified to Observer that anyone “lounging, not drinking” is required to wear one. He added that maintaining social distance between customers is crucial.

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