Fam­ily-run store can sell booze

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Your Telegraph - By KEN MCER­LAIN ken.mcer­lain@pe­ter­bor­oughto­day.co.uk @Etken­m­cer­lain

A FAM­ILY-RUN newsagents banned from sell­ing al­co­hol af­ter be­ing caught in pos­ses­sion of il­licit booze has had the em­bargo lifted fol­low­ing an ap­peal.

Peter­bor­ough City Coun­cil re­voked the al­co­hol li­cence of East­field News, in East­field Road, Peter­bor­ough, in Au­gust last year fol­low­ing a joint op­er­a­tion be­tween the au­thor­ity, po­lice and HM Rev­enue and Cus­toms (HMRC).

Back in April 2011, HMRC of­fi­cers seized a to­tal of 18.2 litres of vodka, 93.75 litres of wine and 168 grams of “Blunt Wrap” smok­ing wraps, as duty to­talling £414.61 had not been paid on the goods.

Store owner Parvez Akhtar and his brother Mo­hammed Tanveer, the li­cence holder, de­cided to ap­peal the decision and a hear­ing was held at Peter­bor­ough Mag­is­trates’ Court yes­ter­day.

The court heard that the il­licit goods had been bought by Bas­rat Hus­sain, the 20-year-old son of Mr Akhtar in a “one­off in­ci­dent” with­out ei­ther his fa­ther’s or Mr Tanveer’s knowl­edge.

Mr Hus­sain said that he bought the goods for around £450 from a trade rep­re­sen­ta­tive us­ing spare change at the premises and be­lieved that the goods were gen­uine.

Ken Peachey, chair­man of the mag- is­trates, said that although the store’s man­age­ment had been “in­ef­fec­tive” in al­low­ing Mr Hus­sain to buy the goods, the decision by the coun­cil’s Li­cens­ing Com­mit­tee to re­voke the store’s li­cence had been “dis­pro­por­tion­ate to the of­fence”.

The store was given back its li­cence to sell al­co­hol with three con­di­tions at­tached to the agree­ment.

These are that the store has two des­ig­nated mem­bers of staff to make pur­chases of al­co­hol; all in­voices for pur­chases of al­co­hol must be kept on the premises; and that records of sup­pli­ers are kept up to date with reg­u­lar spot checks.

Sarah Clover, a solic­i­tor act­ing on be­half of East­field News, said af­ter the hear­ing: “This was a fair re­sult.

“The li­cence should never have been re­voked in the first place.”

The court heard that fol­low­ing the in­ci­dent, Mr Hus­sain was sus­pended and given re-train­ing.

Other mem­bers of the fam­ily, who have run the store for 11 years, were or­dered to at­tend re­fresher train­ing pro­grammes and achieved rel­e­vant qual­i­fi­ca­tions.

new look: Pen­sioner Wil­liam Mark­wick shows off his up­graded mo­bil­ity scooter.

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