In Brief

18 May, 2007

Contaminated vodka warning

Dorset police have warned that potentially contaminated vodka from stricken cargo ship MSC Napoli is being sold in the county. The vodka was stolen from a container at Portland port on May 6, and port authorities have since received information that it has been sold in Weymouth. Police have warned the bottles could be contaminated with the hazardous chemicals that the Napoli was carrying, and warned the vodka should not be drunk.

Licence application uproar

Drinks shop licence applications in Berkshire, Lancashire and Islington in London have met with objections from hundreds of residents and traders. Several applications to open off-licences in Oxford Road, Reading, have received 17 objections, while more than 100 people in Burnham, Lancashire, have objected to an application for a new drinks shop. More than 200 Islington residents and traders have signed a petition against an application for 24-hour sales from Hornsey Food Centre.

Gang 's distraction techniques

Shopkeepers in Darwen, Lancashire, have been warned about a gang of people who use distraction techniques to steal cash. Police issued the warning after members of a group described as wearing "traditional Muslim dress" attempted to break into the back room of Sudelside Off-licence & Mini Market on May 7 while others kept the owner's attention. Police are linking the incident to an earlier one at Village Stores where a gang of Asians or eastern European s grabbed £5,000 from the till after distracting the shopkeeper.

Alcohol ASBO for Oxford man

A man with a history of alcohol-related crime could be sent to prison if he steps foot in an off-licence after drinking alcohol. Kenneth Pollard, of Speedwell Street, Oxford, was served with an ASBO at Oxford Magistrates' Court on May 14 after being arrested for 12 public order offences , carried out in 2006. The ASBO also prohibits him from drinking alcohol or holding an open container of alcohol in a public place other than licensed premises.

Addict jailed for robbery

A drug addict who raided an off-licence in Edinburgh has been jailed for four years. John Young was sentenced at Edinburgh High Court on May 2 for the raid on a branch of Threshers on Dec 3 last year whe n he threatened a female shop assistant with a gun. The 21-year-old assistant ran into a back room and raised the alarm before Young escaped with an empty till drawer.

Shop escapes licence loss

A drinks shop in Netherton, Lancashire, has held on to its premises licence even though it failed two test purchases in October and December. Sefton licensing committee said it would not revoke the licence because licensee David Birchall had ensured staff had completed licensing training courses. Birchall was told he must ensure new staff are trained properly.




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