Published on December 3rd, 2015 | by Dean Carr
Alcohol licence refused in Hull
COUNCILLORS have refused to grant a new alcohol licence at a shop where almost 40 bottles of fake vodka were seized earlier this year.
The counterfeit booze was found at T&J’s Mini Market, in Beverley Road, during two raids by police and trading standards officers in July 2015.
The shop’s licence was temporarily suspended after the raids and was later voluntarily surrendered by the then premises supervisor Najad Hussein shortly before a review hearing.
Now, councillors have rejected a fresh licence application by new owner Shawana Abdullah, who has also changed the shop’s name to Stop Gap.
They heard that, in July, Mr Abdullah pleaded guilty to three charges of supplying counterfeit tobacco from another shop he owned in Beverley Road.
He was fined a total of £225 for the offences.
At yesterday’s licensing sub-committee meeting, he promised to manage the shop properly and not sell anything illegal.
He also claimed the smuggled cigarettes at his previous business had been brought there by staff members without his knowledge.
His legal adviser, Richard McKenzie, described the convictions as a “relatively minor matter” and claimed it was wrong to imply the current Stop Gap shop had any connection to previous criminality at the premises.
But both Humberside Police and the city council’s trading standards department lodged formal objections.
David Hodgson, representing the police, said: “Mr Abdullah is trying to disassociate himself from what happened in the other premises but, as the owner, he cannot.
“Our concern is this premises is associated with criminality.
“The idea that those in the locality will not associate it with this type of activity is fanciful.
“Granting this licence could lead to further criminality of this type in an area of the town where it is already rife.”
Announcing the committee’s decision, council solicitor Stephen Turner said the application was “fundamentally flawed” because it failed to set out any details on how it would deal with criminal behaviour, one of the authority’s four main licensing objectives.
“The personal reassurances of Mr Abdullah did not go far enough to reassure the committee that the licensing objectives would be sufficiently protected,” he said.
News Source: Hull Daily Mail.