New York boat cruise arrested over illegal party, officials say

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MANHATTAN – An illegal party on a New York cruise ship was closed early Sunday morning, the city’s sheriff’s deputies said.The Liberty Belle, which is operated by Empire Cruises, was spotted departing from Pier 36 in Manhattan with dozens of people on board on Saturday, according to officials and photos of the boat.

The person who posted the photo on Twitter said no one was wearing masks or wearing any social distancing.

Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer said her office will contact city and state agencies about the incident.

The sheriff’s office later said his deputies intercepted the ship’s owners and captain and arrested them for organizing an illegal party in violation of social distancing provisions in the city’s emergency decrees and the State as well as other charges.

A request for comment from Empire Cruises was not immediately returned.

The company shut down operations in March due to the COVID-19 outbreak and a city emergency decree, according to its website.



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