More than 2,500 at an illegal rave in France

French police on Saturday shut down an illegal rave in northwestern France that had been underway since New Year’s Eve in defiance of a curfew and coronavirus restrictions.

A statement from local authorities said police faced “fierce hostility from many partygoers”. At least three officers were injured while attempting to shut down the party after attendees threw objects at them. A vehicle was also set on fire.

More than 2,5000 people attended the warehouse rave in Lieuron, near Rennes in the region of Brittany. Police said a number of them were from the UK and Spain.

The ongoing investigation has not seen sanctions yet though 800 fines for COVID-19 violations and 400 fines for drug offenses have been issued. Upon discovery of the event, police blocked passage to it but somehow the trucks escaped through a single lane. When attempting to shut down the rave, “violent hostility” ensued. That included setting a police car on fire, damaging other vehicles, and spraying soldiers with projectiles. Gendarmes officers seized trucks, sound systems, and generators from the event.

Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin said on Twitter that trucks, sound equipment and generators were seized at the scene and an investigation has been opened.

More than 1,200 fines were issued for non-compliance with the curfew, not wearing a mask and attending an illegal gathering, Mr Darmanin said.