Cops shut down El Centro ‘speakeasy’

Jul 10, 2016 | 0 comments

Following an undercover investigation, police raided a members-only bar Saturday night in the historic distrcit, arresting the owner and confiscating illegal liquor. They called the bar, located behind a tienda on Calle Juan Jaramillo near Presdiente Borrero, a “speakeasy.”

Cuenca police patrolling an El Centro bar district.

Cuenca police patrolling an El Centro bar district.

According to national police major Roberto Alvear, the bar operated without permits and was open only to customers on a membership list. “Since the entrance was inside a small shop, the only way we learned about it was because of noise complaints from neighbors,” he said. “It is the first operation of its kind we have found in Cuenca.”

The bar was not only unlicensed, but operated during unauthorized hours, the investigation found. Alvear said that the bar door even had a “peep hole” to check customers attempting to enter. “It was was like the illegal bars in the U.S. during prohibition,” he said.

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