Manama: A police raid of a “drunken party” in the south of Kuwait has led to 76 arrests in a case that has stunned the local community.

The men and women were booked on charges of illegally possessing bottles of alcohol, drinking in public, engaging in “depraved activities” and cross-dressing.

The police, tipped about the chalet party, used a search warrant from the public prosecution to enter the premises, according to a report in local Arabic daily Al Rai on Sunday.

“The police found semi-naked men and women dancing to loud music and they all seemed completely drunk,” a security source told the daily. “The police promptly covered their bodies and took the 76 men, women and [cross-dressers] to the investigation directorate where they were charged,” the source who was not named said.

Attempts by several people to intercede on their behalf to release them and allow them to go home were resisted by the police upon instructions by their chief, the source added.

“Some of those who were booked had been arrested in similar cases before and made to sign pledges that they would not engage in illicit activities,” the report said.

The detainees whose nationalities were not revealed will be referred to the competent legal authorities.

Under Kuwait’s laws, alcohol is banned and cannot be imported, manufactured or served.

In neighbouring Saudi Arabia, reports said that the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice, the religious police, on Friday arrested 30 people on charges of debauchery and Satanism in an open air party.

“The group were from 11 different nationalities and included Americans, Europeans, Arabs and Saudi nationals,” a member of the Commission posted on his Twitter account, local news site Sabq reported.

“The men and women mixed openly at a party, drank alcohol and used drugs as they engaged in satanic rituals, moving around fire and listening to loud music. Unfortunately, Saudis were among them,” he said.

The religious police serviceman added that those engaged in the fire rituals were naked.

“Three men were arrested as they were engaged in obscene activities with women and one American was busted as he was pushing drugs,” he said.

The case, confirmed by the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice in the Saudi capital Riyadh, has been referred to the competent authorities, the report said.