Bet­ting shop fined for no TV li­cence

Book­ies must pay £497 for screening live sports

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS - By Katherine Cle­men­tine katherine.cle­men­tine@trin­i­tymir­ror.com

A HAYES bet­ting shop was pros­e­cuted and served with a fine after be­ing caught screening live sport for cus­tomers with­out a TV li­cence.

Co­ral Rac­ing, in Uxbridge Road in Hayes, was or­dered to pay a to­tal of £497 at Uxbridge Mag­is­trates’ Court on Tues­day April 19.

The bet­ting shop was fined was fined £270 for the of­fence of us­ing a TV with­out a li­cence on the busi­ness premises.

It was also or­dered to pay £200 costs and a £27 vic­tim sur­charge at the hear­ing in its ab­sence.

Any busi­ness that shows tele­vi­sion pro­grammes as they’re be­ing shown on TV, or live on an on­line TV ser­vice, whether for cus­tomers’ use or in staff ar­eas, must be cov­ered by a valid TV Li­cence.

Martin Dyan, TV Li­cens­ing spokesper­son for the South East, said: “We ap­pre­ci­ate these are tough times for busi­nesses, but to be fair to the ma­jor­ity who do pay the li­cence fee, we have to take ac­tion against those who watch TV il­le­gally.

“As our sur­vey shows, those busi­nesses who do try to get away with it might find the price of be­ing caught to be higher than just a fine.”

A pub in Feltham was among three handed hefty fines only this month for show­ing Sky Sports for pa­trons with­out a proper li­cence.

A sur­vey of more than 250 man­agers at UK busi­nesses, con­ducted with the Bri­tish Cham­bers of Com­merce (BCC) on be­half of TV Li­cens­ing, showed that where a busi­ness needs to make cut­backs 14 per cent would con­sider not pay­ing for a TV Li­cence where one was needed.

The BCC sur­vey also showed that, of those asked what would mo­ti­vate them to en­sure they were cor­rectly li­censed, 98 per cent an­swered the po­ten­tial dam­age to their rep­u­ta­tion from neg­a­tive press cov­er­age of a pros­e­cu­tion for TV Li­cence eva­sion.

Mr Dyan added: “We’d rather busi­nesses think ahead and check if they need a li­cence than risk be­ing pros­e­cuted.

“A li­cence costs £145.50 and can be bought in min­utes on­line.”

Those with­out a valid li­cence are break­ing the law and run the risk of a court pros­e­cu­tion and fine of up to £1,000 per of­fence, plus costs.

Busi­nesses that are found guilty are also re­quired to buy a TV Li­cence at £145.50, or they could face a po­ten­tial sec­ond pros­e­cu­tion.

TV Li­cens­ing is also re­mind­ing other busi­nesses to make sure they are aware of their li­cens­ing re­quire­ments, to avoid the risk of pros­e­cu­tion and a large fine.

Last year, TV Li­cens­ing en­quiry of­fi­cers vis­ited more than 30,000 busi­nesses across the UK, rang­ing from take­away restau­rants and hol­i­day parks to garages, hair sa­lons and sports clubs, to con­firm if they were cor­rectly li­censed.

The bet­ting shop fine comes just weeks after a filthy take­away – with rat drop­pings in its kitchen – was fined after an en­vi­ron­men­tal health in­ves­ti­ga­tion, and a fake Cost­cut­ter was outed and ac­cused of ‘con­ning’ cus­tomers – all in the Hayes area.

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