Police break up three large gatherings in Montreal's Outremont area in under 24 hours

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Montreal police say they responded this morning to two large gatherings in the city's Outremont neighbourhood, their third such intervention in the area in under 24 hours.

Service de Police de la Ville de Montreal spokeswoman Veronique Comtois says all three gatherings were held at places of worship and involved more than 10 people, the limit for indoor religious gatherings.

Police responded to the first gathering around 5:15 p.m. Friday, the second around 9:30 a.m. Saturday, and the third around two hours later at 11:45 a.m.

Officers took the names of people present at the scenes and will submit reports to Quebec's office of criminal prosecutions, which will decide whether to pursue further penalties.

Quebec banned religious gatherings in its latest round of lockdowns earlier this month, but reversed the ban on Thursday after outcry from religious groups.

Comtois says police issued three fines for curfew violations in the same area on Friday night, in incidents unrelated to the gathering earlier that evening.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 23, 2021.

The Canadian Press