Authorities Bust New Year's Eve Parties Around the World for Violating COVID Guidelines

New Year's Eve appeared to be quiet in cities across the world, due to coronavirus restrictions, but the silence was only a front for secret parties. While Times Square was nearly empty aside from performers singing to a digital audience and social media flooded with photos of people spending their countdown from their couches, there were some who bucked the rules.

A handful of New Year's Eve parties around the world were busted by police and, in some places, there are some hefty fines associated with hosting large gatherings. From India to New York City, some very unhappy rule-breakers are staring at the consequences of potentially furthering the Coronavirus spread.

Three New York parties were ended by police on Thursday night. Among them, Maspeth Bar Lounge was caught for hosting around 300 maskless karaoke performers who planned to ring in the New Yea, ignoring the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines.

Stars Hall in Brooklyn, New York, also saw a party of 80 busted, and Manhattan had its own loft party with 145 unmasked people, none of whom appeared to be social distancing.

Party organizers for those three events face fines of $15,000, according to The New York Post.

A hotel in Nagpur, India was also subject to police involvement on Friday when a hotel was found to be serving 300 people, Press Trust of India reported. The business had a strict limit of 120 patrons during COVID restrictions. In the police raid, 67 patrons were arrested.

The United Kingdom reportedly appeared to have the most unsanctioned gatherings. In total, 58 illegal New Year's Eve parties were raided in London with estimated thousands of people ignoring strict, Tier 4 guidelines. Those responsible for hosting those events could face fines amounting to 10,000 pounds, the Evening Standard reported.

Meanwhile, a rave in France was busted by police early Friday morning when 2,500 partiers were found breaking France's COVID curfew--not to mention that 2,500 people were partying, maskless as it appeared, in an indoor space. The Guardian reported that the police's involvement turned violent when ravers began throwing rocks and bottles at the members of law enforcement. One police vehicle was also set on fire.

As of Friday, there have been over 83 million COVID cases throughout the world, according to Johns Hopkins University's tracker, with the U.S. accounting for 25 percent of them when it surpassed the 20 million mark. Officials warned of a spike in coronavirus cases after the holiday festivities from December until January 1.

Times Square NYE event
A large monitor shows the musician Pit Bull performing for a small group of revelers in a mostly empty Times Square during New Years Eve celebration in New York City on January 1, 2021. - Due to the Coronavirus outbreak Times Square is closed to all but a few revelers. COREY SIPKIN/AFP via Getty Images/Getty