Grantham

Shop licence revoked over illegal worker

A store in Grantham has had its licence revoked after police discovered an illegal worker on site during a routine enquiry.

A hearing held in front of the South Kesteven District Council Licensing Sub-Committee on Friday, October 5, also highlighted some employees being paid below the current minimum wage at Today’s Express on Market Place in Grantham.

Over 300 cans of alcohol were seized, which were being sold below the mandatory price at the premise, and the CCTV system was found to be not recording correctly and there were also problems with staff training.

After hearing all the evidence the committee agreed with the police that the premises had been undermining the licensing objectives by employing an illegal work and failing to abide with all the conditions on their licence.

There is a 21 day appeal process and if no appeal is submitted then the revocation comes into action.

Alcohol Licensing Manager for the County, Sergeant Kim Enderby, said: “We initially visited the store on a routine enquiry as they were looking to extend their opening hours.

“My team encountered a male working in the store, who was barred from any form of employment due to his immigration status. The owners had failed to show due diligence and carry out the simple right to work checks that would had prevented this situation.

“The employment of illegal workers can lead to the exploitation of the worker and gives the store unfair advantage over other businesses in the area which are operating legitimately.

“We found that they were paying the male and another female employee only £5.00 per hour, well below the current minimum wage. We seized over 300 cans of alcohol being sold below the mandatory price and the owners have been unable to produce receipts that proved legitimate purchase of this alcohol.

“There were problems with staff training and the CCTV system was not recording correctly. These were all issues that you would not expect to encounter at a responsible Licensed Premises.

“There is certain criminal activity that Licensing Legislation states should be treated particularly seriously, the employing of a person disqualified from that work by reason of their immigration status in the UK, is one of those offences.

“This decision to revoke the Licence sends a clear deterrent message to all stores, they need to ensure they correctly check and record the status of the staff they employ and we expect them to know and enforce the conditions on their licence.

“We do everything we can to promote and encourage lawful and responsible selling of alcohol. Those premises that fail or refuse to do this will have action taken against them.”