RITA Ora has been blasted as 'selfish' by police for holding a secret 30th birthday bash at a London restaurant during Covid lockdown.
Casa Cruz in Notting Hill, West London, could be stripped of its licence following a hearing of Kensington and Chelsea Council's licensing sub-committee today.
The hearing heard the venue was offered a £5,000 bung to break Covid rules by representatives of the star.
Casa Cruz also had CCTV cameras turned off as guests arrived on November 28 — amid the second virus lockdown.
Pictures that emerged at the time showed guests including model Cara
Delevigne and her sister Poppy carrying Rita Ora branded Tequila.
The hearing, which was held online due to covid restrictions, heard
how the then manager of Casa Cruz, in west London, was called by
Rita's staff and offered £5,000 to open up for the party.
Charles Holland, who is representing the Met Police's application,
said:''Police were advised that a party was being held on November 28
at the venue, Casa Cruz.
''They were told large groups of people had arrived via the back door
of the club, there was security and loud music was being played and
this was all during the second national lockdown.
''At the time venues had to close and stop providing food and drink,
people were told to stay at home and it was unlawful to gather in
groups of two or more.
''What transpired was that the premises was hosting a party for a Ms
Rita Ora, a well known celebrity.
''The then manager at the time Scotti Bhattarai had been contacted and
offered £5,000 for the use of the premises, he agreed and has admitted
he was being greedy.''
Cops were unable to get into the club although they did see people
inside and eventually left after being unable to get in.
Mr Holland added how Bhattarai, who has since been sacked, also
switched off the CCTV in the premises at the request of Rita's
He added:''This meant that they could not view the footage even though
they should have been able to and the footage from the previous 31
days had also disappeared.''
Mr Holland added:''This was one of the most notorious breaches of
regulations during the pandemic.''
Then slamming Rita and the venue, he said they had acted ''selfishly
wanted to flout the lockdown for financial gain and selfish
In a statement to cops on December 1, Mr Bhattarai said he was contacted by a representative of Rita on his personal mobile at 5.30pm.
He said the person wanted somewhere for “drinks and nibbles” and he was offered £5,000.
Most staff were on furlough so Mr Bhattarai went to the venue to “facilitate”, admitting he was “greedy”.
He said the plan was to have around seven guests but by 9pm almost 20 had turned up.
They included model Cara Delevingne, her sister Poppy and Towie’s Vas Morgan.
Police were called just before midnight. Photos later emerged of Rita and pals leaving — as revealed by The Sun.
Mr Bhattarai said no payment had been made at the time of the party.
Rita later apologised for “breaking the rules” and volunteered to pay a £10,000 fine.
The hearing continues.
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