Police probing modeling agency’s Tel Aviv rooftop bash for violating virus rules
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Police probing modeling agency’s Tel Aviv rooftop bash for violating virus rules

Organizer of swanky party, attended by 300 including local celebrities, questioned on suspicion of ‘spreading a dangerous disease’

A party at the Carlton Hotel in Tel Aviv on June 2, 2020. (Screen capture: Twitter)
A party at the Carlton Hotel in Tel Aviv on June 2, 2020. (Screen capture: Twitter)

Police on Wednesday opened an investigation after a large rooftop party was held at a beachfront hotel in Tel Aviv, in apparent contravention of ordinances meant to contain the coronavirus.

Tuesday’s party at the Carlton Hotel was organized by Elite Model Management and attended by numerous models and local celebrities. Channel 12 news put turnout at over 300 people.

Police said four people were detained for their involvement with the party.

The organizer of the event, who was not named, was suspected of “spreading a dangerous disease” and was summoned to testify, according to a police statement.

Police also said they were looking into “licensing aspects” of the party, without elaborating.

Gatherings of over 50 people are banned under the Health Ministry’s current guidelines and those in attendance at such group events are supposed to wear masks and maintain a distance of two meters from one another.

Video shared on social media from Tuesday’s event showed maskless party-goers in close proximity to one another.

The event came only a day after another large rooftop party in Tel Aviv that police were also reportedly investigating.

Real estate developer Itzik Toledano, who hosted the earlier party at the Yoo residential towers, was summoned for questioning Tuesday but told police he couldn’t attend as he was sick, the Kan public broadcaster reported.

The event, a bar mitzhah party for Toledano’s son, was attended by a number of celebrities and included a fireworks show and loud music, prompting noise complaints to police.

Among those in attendance was Likud MK Nir Barkat.

“[Barkat] came to attend a family bar mitzvah party at a private home he was invited to as a guest, and that he believed would be held in accordance with the guidelines,” Kan quoted a statement from Barkat as saying.

Barkat came under fire in April for violating the Health Ministry’s virus restrictions on hosting family gatherings during the Passover holiday. He subsequently apologized for doing so.

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