A Victorian minister has criticized prominent WAG Nadia Bartel during a Covid press conference, saying she should be ’embarrassed’.
Industry Support and Recovery Minister Martin Pakula was asked on Saturday about a viral video showing Bartel snorting cocaine at a party during Melbourne’s strict lockdown this week.
Mr Pakula responded by saying the scandal was a warning to all Victorians, but it is… It was up to the police to decide whether to charge Bartel for violating Covid restrictions.
“It’s not good for anyone to break the rules, it makes it more dangerous for the whole community, it makes it more likely that these kinds of restrictions will last longer,” Mr Pakula said.
The video was accidentally uploaded to Instagram by her boyfriend and business partner, Ellie Pearson. The couple is pictured together buying wine for the party. “I’m just devastated,” Pearson said Friday night
“Participants should feel appropriately ashamed,” Victoria’s Health Minister Martin Pakula said at Saturday’s daily Covid-19 press conference.
“Of course, if it’s someone with a profile… it kind of makes it clearer that that kind of behavior isn’t acceptable.
‘The participants should rightly be ashamed of themselves.
“But it serves as a warning to all of us that the more such events occur, the harder it is for us to reduce the number of cases.”
Victoria’s strict lockdown rules have banned public and private gatherings, while the state fights the outbreak of the Delta variant, which identified 190 new Covid-19 cases overnight.
Prime Minister Daniel Andrews again declined to comment on the video on Saturday, repeating his response from a day earlier.
On Friday, Mr Andrews said he had not seen the footage but stressed that all Victorians must follow the rules during the lockdown.
“I would urge everyone to always do their best to abide by the rules. I know it’s hard, I know it’s hard,” he said.
“Besides, I don’t tend to comment on images I haven’t seen.”
Police attended 36-year-old AFL WAG’s $3 million inner-city home on Friday night, hours after the video was accidentally uploaded to Instagram by Bartel’s friend and business partner, Ellie Pearson.
Two plainclothes officers were seen at Bartel’s home, but were unable to contact her at the time.
Nadia Bartel (pictured) was visited by police on Friday, after she was filmed breaking Melbourne’s strict lockdown and snorting what is believed to be cocaine at a party Thursday night, in a video that has gone viral
Nadia Bartel, 36, (pictured) had plainclothes police officers visit her $3 million home on Friday after footage emerged of her sniffing white powder from a plate at an illegal rally in Melbourne during the lockdown
It comes as the Department of Health issued a statement saying it is “maintaining contact with Victoria Police in relation to the alleged incident”.
Bartel broke her silence and apologized for the incident Friday night.
“Hello everyone, I’ve let you all down because of my actions. I take full responsibility and am committed to taking all necessary steps to ensure I make better choices in the future,” she wrote in an Instagram post.
“To my family and friends, my business associates and the health professionals who are trying to keep us all safe, I am ashamed and sorry.
“I am sincerely and deeply sorry. I hope I can earn your forgiveness and, in time, your trust.’
Footage of Bartel snorting white powder from a plate during the meeting went viral on Friday morning.
The 36-year-old mother of two broke her silence in a post shared on Instagram Friday afternoon: “Hi everyone, I’ve disappointed you all with my actions. I take full responsibility and am committed to taking all necessary steps to ensure that I make better choices in the future.”
The video shows Bartel sniffing the powder off a $1.50 Kmart board held by a dark-haired woman, while a third woman shows a two-finger hand gesture in the background.
Nadia’s apology — including an appeal for forgiveness from health professionals — appears to confirm that the meeting was held Thursday night.
Fellow WAGs Bec Judd, Kylie Brown, celebrity stylist Lana Wilkinson and model Brooke Hogan have all publicly shown their support for Nadia by “liking” her apology post on Instagram.
The savvy businesswoman launched her fashion label Henne in 2019, with the brand quickly taking off in Australia’s elite social circles.
The range of ribbed basics and knitwear, worn by fellow WAG Bec Judd and former Miss Universe Australia Olivia Molly Rogers, was picked up by many women when the pandemic hit last year.
Bartel’s blazers and ribbed crop tops have also proved a huge success, as has the booming SprayAus business she runs with Judd, wife of former West Coast and Carlton midfielder Chris Judd.
She’s changed her Instagram bio to remove references to SprayAus and Henne since the video surfaced.
Private and public gatherings are not allowed in Melbourne, where Bartel lives, under Victoria’s Covid restrictions
The clip opens with the fashion and beauty influencer appearing to be leaning across the board with a rolled up banknote in her left nostril while pressing her right nostril. She then sniffs the dust while one of the women watches
Bartel has disabled comments on her Instagram after the embarrassing video was leaked
Pearson, who filmed the viral clip, revealed she was remorseful about the incident.
On Friday afternoon, Nadia’s father visited her at her Melbourne home and reportedly stayed for 30 minutes.
Nadia stayed in her property while her father parked his car and rang the doorbell.
Daily Mail Australia has contacted Bartel for comment.
Bartel is a mother of two and an entrepreneur who runs the fake tanning company Spray Aus and clothing label Henne.
She is the ex-wife of retired AFL star Jimmy Bartel, a Brownlow medalist who spent his career with the Geelong Cats. The couple split in 2019 after a five-year marriage.
Now she faces the prospect of losing her lucrative endorsement deals on the video.
She also faces a significant fine for violating the city’s ban on home gatherings, as Victoria Police Department paid a visit to her $3 million downtown home Friday night just hours after the post.
Anyone who violates the strict rule, which is in effect statewide, faces a fine of up to $5,452. Penalties up to $21,808 can also be imposed on adults through Victoria’s court system for aggravated violations.
The scathing footage of the mother of two sniffing the substance off a $1.50 Kmart board could also cause her steady stream of free social media to dry up.
The famous Instagram influencer, who has 559,000 followers, is highly regarded by companies across Australia who send her free products in the hopes that she will promote them to her fans.
Her numerous ambassadorial roles – with skincare brands La Roche-Posay, Ole Henriksen and makeup label Marc Jacobs Beauty – could be in serious jeopardy.
She was ambassador for the Melbourne Cup last year – a role she may have to give up in November.
She is the ex-wife of retired AFL star Jimmy Bartel (right), a Brownlow medalist who spent his career with the Geelong Cats. The couple broke up in 2019 after a five-year marriage