Couple fined £1,000 over Indian dinner for 4 in Durham weeks earlier than Keir Starmer’s curry name

 A pair fined £1,000 for having dinner with two associates in lockdown yesterday hit out at police for treating Keir Starmer extra leniently than ‘regular folks like us’.

They have been penalised for an incident a couple of weeks earlier than, and some miles from, the notorious ‘Beergate’ curry in Durham.

Officers ignored their clarification for socialising with far fewer folks than the Labour chief.

Chris Brown, 32, and spouse Gemma, 37, went to a different couple’s home for a steak dinner and few drinks in March final 12 months. 

However through the night two cops knocked on the door saying that they had been advised 18 folks have been partying inside.

Mrs Brown stated they invited the officers in to indicate them solely 4 folks have been current and defined that their hosts have been a assist bubble for her husband due to his psychological well being issues. 

He was being handled for despair following the loss of life of a detailed good friend.

All 4 later obtained letters informing them that they had been fined £200 for breaching Covid laws.

Anger: Chris and Gemma Brown 

Mrs Brown, a magnificence therapist and mom of two, initially contested the effective believing that they had not damaged the legislation final March 6. 

She ultimately paid £560 in February after bailiffs got here to her home. 

Her husband pleaded not responsible to breaking Covid legal guidelines when the case got here earlier than Newton Aycliffe magistrates final Friday. 

Nonetheless the window and door installer modified his plea to responsible when he discovered he may find yourself paying out greater than £1,000 if he misplaced.

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He was fined £200 and ordered to pay £200 prices and a £34 surcharge.

Commenting on a comparability with the Labour chief’s case, Mrs Brown stated: ‘It’s completely different for folks in energy as they get away with it. 

The police wouldn’t cope with them in the identical means as us regular folks.

‘It has price us £1,000 to have dinner with two associates. 

Not one of the restrictions made any sense both. 

You possibly can go to work with a bunch of individuals however can’t have a drink with two associates.

‘We didn’t consider we had dedicated a criminal offense and didn’t assume we had completed something unsuitable. 

We have been bubbled up due to Chris’s psychological well being. 

He was struggling quite a bit, not having the ability to see folks aside from me. He was very down.’

She stated the 2 officers didn’t take their arguments critically.

The couple dwell within the village of Burnhope, close to Durham, and visited their associates three miles away in Stanley at a time when restrictions banned indoor socialising.

Mrs Brown stated Sir Keir ought to nonetheless obtain a effective and criticised the Prime Minister for breaking Covid guidelines together with his Downing Road workers: ‘They put the restrictions in place and they need to observe what they preach.’

There have been claims that due to the Dominic Cummings Barnard Fort case Sir Keir is unlikely to be issued with a hard and fast penalty discover even when he’s discovered to have damaged the foundations from the gathering on the miners corridor in Durham on April 30 final 12 months.

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In Might 2020 police stated that Boris Johnson’s former chief aide might need breached restrictions however it will not take retrospective motion as this may quantity to treating him in another way to different members of the general public.

When Durham police made that call in respect of Mr Cummings, the native MP was fast to jot down to Mr Johnson to say that the general public demanded the adviser be sacked. The MP was Mary Foy who was pictured with Sir Keir within the Beergate video.

Durham Constabulary refused to remark yesterday.

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