New York City Man Arrested For Running Speakeasy Amid Coronavirus Lockdown

By Bill Galluccio

March 31, 2020

A New York City man is facing multiple charges after police shut down the speakeasy he was running in Brooklyn. Officials raided Miami II Sport Cafe just after 11 p.m. on Saturday (March 28) night and found about a dozen people drinking and gambling in violation of the city's stay at home order.

The patrons at the illegal establishment were ordered to go home, while the owner, 56-year-old Vasil Pando, was taken into custody and charged with illegal sale of alcohol, promoting gambling, reckless endangerment and criminal nuisance.

According to NBC New Yorkpolice visited 7,667 bars and restaurants throughout the city and found that 5,867 were closed. Pando was the only person arrested as officials cracked down on violations of the lockdown order issued to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Mayor Bill de Blasio said that the city will fine people $500 if they ignore the social distancing guidelines.

"They're going to give people every chance to listen, and anyone doesn't listen, they deserve a fine at this point," he said.

To keep up to date on the latest news about the coronavirus and to understand what you need to stay safe and healthy, check out the Coronavirus: Fact vs. Fiction podcast from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta.

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