Four students have been fined £10,000 each after police found more than 30 people hiding in the kitchen and basement at a house party.
The Nottingham Trent University students reportedly told police officers “we should be having the time of our lives” and accused them of “spoiling their fun” at the house party.
The four students had claimed everybody had left the party, but Nottinghamshire Police said more than 30 people were found hiding in a kitchen, upstairs bedrooms and basement at the party in the Lenton area of the city.
Assistant Chief Constable Kate Meynell, of Nottinghamshire Police, said: “This needs to stop. The claims that police presented as a barrier to the students’ fun are astounding.
“How many fines do we have to give before the message is understood? We do not take pleasure in handing out fines and would much rather be in a situation where students could enjoy themselves, but the reality is that if people do not follow the Covid-19 restrictions, more people will die.
“The majority of students are following the rules but there obviously is a significant number of them who feel as though they can show blatant disregard for the safety of those around them.
“We have demonstrated that we will take action where necessary and I’d like to thank the community protection officers for spotting the party and engaging with the occupants at the house in Lenton last night.”
Fines of £10,000 for people caught facilitating or organising illegal raves came into force in England in August.
Other participants can continue to be issued with fines of £100, while people who have already been fined will see the amount double on each offence, up to a maximum of £3,200.
Ms Meynell said officers will be working closely with Nottingham Trent University and the local authority to ensure all breaches of coronavirus guidelines are dealt with appropriately.
“The students were given the opportunity for the situation to end with a warning, but instead decided it was appropriate to lie to officers,” said Ms Meynell.
“This behaviour will not be tolerated and I urge those who are considering to host parties to think again.”
In a statement, the university said they had been notified by police on Wednesday that fines had been imposed.
“On receipt of that notification we immediately launched an investigation, and each student has been suspended pending the outcome of our investigation,” wrote the university.
“Any student who is found to have breached our disciplinary regulations can face a range of sanctions, up to and including expulsion.
“We have repeatedly made clear to all students that they, like everyone, have a crucial role to play in limiting the spread of this virus.
“We will not tolerate any breaches, and where we have evidence of any breaches, we will always take immediate action under our disciplinary processes.”