Noth­ing mi­nor in liquor of­fences

Central Leader - - News - By Janie Smith

Su­perettes and small bot­tle stores are fail­ing to get the mes­sage when it comes to sell­ing al­co­hol to mi­nors.

A po­lice op­er­a­tion tar­get­ing 100 Auck­land premises caught 18 break­ing the law by sell­ing to mi­nors with no iden­ti­fi­ca­tion.

The op­er­a­tion ran for three days last week, cov­er­ing cen­tral Auck­land, west to Block­house Bay and east to Glen Innes.

Sergeant Ja­son Loye says many larger shops like su­per­mar­kets and fran­chise stores op­er­ated prop­erly, but most of those that failed the test were small stores and su­perettes.

“Peo­ple try to see if they can make a quick buck and don’t seem to think they will ever get caught. They need to be well aware of who they are sell­ing to.”

Some were not fully aware of the con­di­tions of their li­cence, he says.

One store told a mi­nor his age was “close enough”, while an­other told him to bring iden­ti­fi­ca­tion next time.

Both sold him al­co­hol.

Mr Loye says po­lice will be mak­ing ap­pli­ca­tions to sus­pend or can­cel the liquor li­cences of the failed premises and sus­pend the man­agers’ cer­tifi­cates of the duty man­agers work­ing at the time.

“Peo­ple do­ing the sales could be charged in the dis­trict court with the crim­i­nal of­fence of sell­ing to a mi­nor.”

The Portage Li­cens­ing Trust op­er­ates liquor out­lets in Avon­dale, Block­house Bay, Water­view and Owairaka, and did not have any sell­ers caught in the op­er­a­tion.

West Auck­land Trust Ser­vices chief ex­ec­u­tive Murray Spearman says staff mem­bers sign a doc­u­ment each shift they work say­ing they will re­quest iden­ti­fi­ca­tion from any­one who looks un­der 25.

The cash reg­is­ters also re­quire staff to en­ter the birth date of the cus­tomer they are ask­ing for proof of age and if they are too young, the sale is stopped.

If staff are caught sell­ing al­co­hol to mi­nors, an in­ves­ti­ga­tion is car­ried out and they may be given a writ­ten warn­ing or lose their jobs.

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