777 Richards Street

Vancouver police have arrested the owner of a penthouse condo and allege he was running a private nightclub in his home – complete with cash machines, menus and doormen.

The 42-year old resident of 777 Richards Street was removed in handcuffs and police handed out more than $17,000 in fines to dozens of guests Sunday morning.

It was the second time in a week officers had busted the man allegedly running the nightclub.

“Our officers found 78 people inside the three-level apartment, and none of them were wearing masks,” said Sgt. Steve Addison.

“There were menus, tables, point-of-sale terminals, and cash tills.”

Officers issued each party-goer a $230 ticket for attending a non-complaint event – contrary to the Emergency Program Act. The party host was arrested under the Public Health Act and taken to jail.

The Emergency Program Act bans social gatherings of any size inside residences, but allows people who live alone to host two people with whom they regularly socialize.

“Let this be a lesson to anyone who thinks the rules don’t apply to them. If you are caught hosting or attending a party during the pandemic, and continue to break the rules, you could face stiff fines or wind up in jail,” said Addison.

Vancouver police launched an investigation a week ago after a witness called police to report a large party inside a penthouse apartment near Richards Street and Georgia Street. Police handed out numerous fines to a man who was allegedly working as a doorman, however the party host refused to open the door and was defiant with police.

Officers returned early Sunday morning with a search warrant after two additional large parties were held this weekend.

“The 1,100-square-foot penthouse was packed with people and appeared to be running as a nightclub and show lounge,” said VPD in a statement.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard

News Editor & Calgary Bureau Chief

Dave Naylor is News Editor & Calgary Bureau Chief of the Western Standard based in the Calgary Headquarters. He served as City Editor of the Calgary Sun & covered Alberta news for nearly 40 years.

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