British teacher arrested at illegal house party during Covid-19 third wave in Thailand

A British teacher was among those arrested at an illegal house party during the third Covid-19 wave in Thailand. The group of English language teachers were throwing a boozy birthday bash for a Filipino colleague at a rented luxury villa in ‘Sin City’ Pattaya on Sunday night (April 25). Furious neighbours were allegedly kept awake by loud music and laughter throughout the night. They called police who raided the upmarket property shortly before midnight and found dozens of bottles of liquor. Those arrested included 13 Philippines nationals, six Russians, two French, a British man, a Canadian, an Albanian, a Cambodian, and three Thais – 17 of which were females and 11 males. Police today (April 26) named the Brit as 21-year-old Leo Dion Shattock. Footage shows the 28 partygoers being taken to the police station in the back of pickup trucks after being caught at the Exquisite Pool Villas in popular tourist destination best known for its round-the-clock adult entertainment. Police said the group of English tutors had thrown a large party in violation of laws banning public gatherings, which have been tightened following surging cases in recent weeks in Thailand. Banglamung District Sheriff Colonel Methawit Praditphol said the group was drunk and held in custody at the station. He said: ‘The group was drinking alcohol when the officers arrived at the villa but there was no evidence of the use of illegal substances. ‘None of them had a fever but they will be tested again for Covid-19. We found out that the Albanian and the Cambodian national’s visas were expired so they will face separate punishments for that as well.’ Police said most of the arrested workers were confused and claimed they did not know that the Covid-19 restrictions had been in place. After an interpreter helped explain the situation to the foreigners, each person was charged with the violation of the Covid-19 state of emergency decree prohibiting public gatherings. They are being detained at the Nong Prue district police station during the process. Cololnel Methawit Praditphol said the group had been partying at a ‘luxury two-story villa’ which included a swimming pool and pool table. He added: ‘The house was decorated with balloons and there was lots of alcohol. None of the people there were concerned about the risk of spreading the virus. That’s a danger for themselves and other people.’ Thailand has seen record Covid-19 cases in recent weeks following an outbreak in the capital Bangkok linked to nightclubs and coyote bars, which were visited by politicians, diplomats and leading business figured. Ministers have now introduced 20,000 baht (456 GBP) fines for not wearing a mask outdoors and closed a swathe of business – but not shopping malls and restaurants. The country recorded 2,048 new cases on Monday (April 26) and eight deaths, taking the total number of infections recording since the pandemic began to 57,508 with 125 deaths as of April 24.