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Covid-19: Birmingham nightclub loses licence after rules breaches

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image captionThe Nakira club has repeatedly breached Covid-19 guidelines, Birmingham's licensing committee heard

A nightclub that stopped an injured man calling 999 to avoid being exposed for breaching Covid-19 restrictions has lost its licence.

Police reported a "number of Covid breaches" at Birmingham's Nakira nightclub in recent weeks.

It was accused of "covering up" a violent incident on 24 September when a man had the tip of his thumb severed.

Birmingham City Council revoked the bar's licence, finding "a flagrant approach to Covid-19 regulations".

The Local Democracy Reporting Service said the injured man's thumb had been partially severed when a male employee "slammed his finger in the main door" between 03:00 and 04:00 BST.

"He was told not to call the police or an ambulance and was taken out of the fire exit by friends and conveyed to hospital in a car," West Midlands Police told the council's licensing committee.

It followed further incidents going back to August where officers reported seeing between 50 and 70 people at the premises in Suffolk Street, Queensway, in the early hours of the morning with no social distancing in place.

The club defended itself by saying police were "not public health experts and therefore should not be bringing a public health point around coronavirus before the committee".

However, the council ruled on the side of the police, branding the Nakira's actions "deliberate, reckless, or at the very least grossly negligent ... in order to further their commercial interests".

The venue has 28 days to appeal against the decision. However, its licence will remain suspended pending any challenges.

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