The 29-year-old doctoral student who hosted a Brussels orgy that made headlines around the world has spoken out in defense of his lockdown-busting sex party.
The night out led to the resignation of Hungary’s prominent anti-LGBTQ politician Josef Szajer, who tried to escape through a window onto the roof when police burst in, but the host insisted that he took all necessary safety precautions.
David Manzheley told the Hungarian tabloid Blikk and Brussels-based Dutch-language news outlet Het Laatste Nieuws that he had only invited around 10 male guests to the party and he had nurses there to administer rapid COVID-19 tests at the door.
Szajer was not an invited guest, but had accompanied a friend, Manzheley told Blikk, which posted photos of him and the interior of the small Brussels apartment where the soiree was held last Friday.
“I always invite a few friends to my parties, who in turn bring some friends along, and then we make it fun together,” he said. “We talk a little, we have a drink—just like in a café. The only difference is that in the meantime we also have sex with each other. I don’t see what’s wrong with that.”
The room where Manzheley held the party in his apartment was strung with black cobwebs and skulls with glowing eyes along with devil tridents and other Halloween-motif decorations on the walls. There were also pink hearts galore, overstuffed sofas along the walls, and mattresses strewn across the apartment floor, according to the photos published in Blikk.
Manzheley said he had not met the Hungarian politician until the party, which was interrupted after neighbors called police to make a noise complaint. He told local media outlets that there were many international guests at the party. “The police broke the door on us without knocking,” he told the Dutch news outlet. “They were rude, very insulting to us.”
Szajer, who was not carrying identification, tried to escape the party through an open window but was stopped by police, who then took him to his apartment to confirm his identity and diplomatic status as a member of European Parliament.
The Hungarian politician quit as a member of European parliament on Sunday before the news of his escapade emerged. On Wednesday, he also resigned from Victor Orban’s ruling Fidesz party, which is renowned for its anti-LGBTQ stance. Szajer, who helped found the party, had been one of the lawmakers who drew up legislation in Hungary explicitly stating that marriage should be between a man and a woman.
Orban accepted the resignation and denounced his former colleague. “The actions of our fellow deputy, Jozsef Szajer, are incompatible with the values of our political family,” he said. “We will not forget nor repudiate his thirty years of work, but his deed is unacceptable and indefensible.”
Various news outlets reported that other diplomats and businessmen were also at the party in Brussels, but Manzheley said he was not sure about that.
Questions have been raised about whether Szajer or other guests tried to hide their identity using diplomatic immunity, but the host said it was simply a case of not having the information to hand. “How could we have handed over our IDs so quickly when we weren’t wearing underpants?” he said.
Police say Szajer had ecstasy tablets in his backpack when he was apprehended. He says he asked police to administer a drug test, which they did not do, and denies that they belonged to him. All party guests were fined €250 for breaking Belgium’s COVID lockdown regulations.