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Covid-19: Sports bar Darts Buddy fined S$5,000 for serving alcohol after 10.30pm

SINGAPORE — When the authorities came across a sports bar in the Jalan Besar area earlier this year, they noticed people entering and exiting through a rear entrance, with the roller shutters brought down over the front entrance to create a false impression that it was closed.

Covid-19: Sports bar Darts Buddy fined S$5,000 for serving alcohol after 10.30pm

The Darts Buddy bar in Beatty Road was fined S$5,000 in court on Dec 10, 2021.

SINGAPORE — When the authorities came across a sports bar in the Jalan Besar area earlier this year, they noticed people entering and exiting through a rear entrance, with the roller shutters brought down over the front entrance to create a false impression that it was closed.

The bar — Darts Buddy, which also sells food and non-alcoholic drinks — was fined S$5,000 on Friday (Dec 10) after its representative pleaded guilty to a Covid-19-related charge of serving liquor on its premises past 10.30pm.

The prevailing Covid-19 (Temporary Measures) Act bans businesses from allowing customers to drink liquor on its premises after 10.30pm every day.

Another similar charge of allowing patrons to play poker there at 9pm was taken into consideration for sentencing.

The court heard that a party of police and safe distancing enforcement officers had come across Darts Buddy, located at 28 Beatty Road, at about 10.40pm on Jan 29.

The officers noticed that the front entrance was closed, but that patrons were continuing to use the rear entrance. They then entered the premises and discovered at least 35 patrons, not including staff members, who were still drinking alcohol.

At least two beer towers that were more than half-full were also on the various tables, along with multiple glasses containing alcohol.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Kenneth Kee told the court that Darts Buddy, through its staff and management, knew of the ban on serving liquor past 10.30pm, but remained open to increase its sales.

The prosecutor asked for a fine of S$4,500 to S$5,000, citing aggravating factors such as the bar’s attempt to avoid detection and the large size of the crowd.

Dart Buddy’s defence counsel, Mr Dhanwant Singh, attempted to argue that before this incident, some customers had entered late and that one “highly intoxicated patron” had once insisted on going in around 10.30pm. This purportedly led to the bar’s policy of closing its front shutters at that time.

However, DPP Kee responded that it was clear patrons had continued to enter after 10.30pm.

Companies that breach Covid-19 rules can be fined up to S$10,000 for each charge.

Related topics

Darts Buddy liquor Covid-19

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