A pair of New Jersey gym owners who have repeatedly defied the "tyrannical" edicts of Garden State Gov. Phil Murphy, who closed gyms as part of the state's COVID-inspired restrictions, told Fox that they have racked up more than $1.2MM in fines for refusing to adhere to the state's COVID-19-related restrictions.
The co-owner of Atilis Gym in Bellmawr, who have appeared in the past on air with Tucker Carlson and others on Fox as libertarians and conservatives opposed to the strict lockdowns rallied to their cause, said that the state and the governor have "thrown everything he possibly could to shut us down."
They've also been given roughly 60 citations, and both have been arrested. Every single day they open their gym in violation of the state order, the team rack up another 16K in fines.
"He has arrested my partner and I, given us over 60 citations, some of them criminal. He fines us $15,497.76 per day for every day we're open," Smith said during an interview. "Our fines are totaling over $1.2 million, but every single day, Frank and I open our gym."
New Jersey allowed gyms to reopen (with the caveat that they must observe restrictions and capacity limits) on Sept. 1.
Atilis, however, defied the state's shutdown orders by opening its doors at the end of May, launching the legal battle between the state and gym that has been the subject of national speculation and coverage.
During the interview, Smith claimed none of the state's COVID-19 cases have been linked to his gym, while the gym has told its members they can wear masks when they work out, thought it doesn't require them to do so, as the state's rules mandate, he noted.