Nothing minor in liquor offences
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.