Brixton Academy security ‘took bribes to let people in without tickets,’ according to an investigation into Asake’s London concert (video)
A police investigation has revealed that security guards at Brixton Academy, the south London venue for Nigerian singer Asake’s concert, where two people died in a stampede, allegedly took bribes to let people in without tickets.
A security guard who worked on the night of the incident told police that the act had been going on since 2009 and that some of his colleagues had made £1,000 in bribes from people who came to concerts without tickets. He also accused the venue’s security firm of knowing about the illegal transactions. “People were taking money… Some employees earned £1,000 in cash “The BBC was informed by an AP Security guard. “Our company knew what was going on and who was doing it, but they did nothing about it.”
The whistleblower guard, who went by the alias Rohan, also stated that on the night of the fatal crush, there were only 110 security guards on duty, when there should have been 190.
He described the crush which took place at Asake’s concert “like being in a car crash that’s been really awful – being crashed on and stamped on”. When a few people bribe their way in, Rohan claims that things get “out of hand,” because word of the breach spreads and more people try their luck.
The whistleblower went on to say;
“When you let a few people in, they’ll text their friends, and their friends will text them.
“And then the bouncers became greedy, and things got out of hand. And people wanted to come in anyway, without a ticket.
“You can train someone to perfection, but when something like that happens in front of you, you actually stop… you freeze.”
Rohan claimed that bribes were discussed in staff meetings, but AP Security managers did not reprimand guards accused of allowing ticketless people in.
He also revealed that bribing security guards for tickets was not limited to Brixton Academy, but occurred at a number of other venues and festivals where he worked.
A police chief told the BBC that a week before Asake’s concert, guards allowed people without tickets to enter a different event held at the same Brixton academy.
Following the crush, Brixton Academy’s license was suspended. On Monday, January 16, Lambeth Council extended the suspension until April 16.
The venue’s license holder, AMG Group, stated that it is cooperating fully with police.
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