Wedding venue accused of major breach
A wedding venue in Sydney's west faces being fined $5000 for allowing between 600 and 800 guests at a reception, the NSW Police Minister says.
David Elliott confirmed police were investigating the Fairfield wedding reception held on Saturday about 10km away from a concerning cluster linked to a bottle shop in Berala.
Current NSW Health restrictions allow for a maximum of 350 guests and that is under the one person per four square metre rule.
A statement from NSW Police said officers visited the venue on Spencer Street, Fairfield at about 9.20pm on Saturday.
"A venue operator is facing a fine after a wedding in Sydney's southwest breached COVID restrictions," the statement read.
"Officers (who attended) estimated the number of guests to be between 600 and 800 at the time. Under COVID restrictions set by NSW Health, weddings were limited to 350 guests.
"A venue operator, a 46-year-old man, was advised he may be issued a $5000 infringement."
Mr Elliott said he was fuming about what had happened.
"The operator has been fined $5000 and I'm furious," Mr Elliott told 2GB radio on Monday.
"I was told the Fairfield local area command attended a wedding venue (that had) 700 people and has been fined $5000. It's infuriated me; it's not that way I wanted to spend my Monday morning I can assure you.
"The operator, a 46-year-old man, did breach the Public Health Orders and it was such a high-level breach the police will ensure he gets the $5000 (fine). He can challenge that and risk himself six months in jail."
Mr Elliott said the breach occurred just 10km away from the Berala cluster which stood at 13 cases on Monday morning.
Thousands of customers who may have been exposed at the BWS Berala store between December 22 and December 31 are being urged to get tested and isolate for 14 days, regardless of the result.
"This isn't a dozen people that turned up unannounced, this is twice the amount of people that were allowed to attend that wedding reception in an area not far from Berala," Mr Elliott told the Today show.
"So, it is a time that western Sydney needs to be well and truly on its game when it comes to complying with Public Health Orders.
"It is not about the fines or the punishment, this is about compliance, and people need to realise the police are enforcing a law to keep them healthy.
"We don't want to go back into lockdown. That's why we have introduced these Public Health Orders and I'm very disappointed that the Fairfield police area command has had to go through that over the last 48 hours."
Originally published as Wedding venue accused of major breach