Claims Chesterfield schoolgirl 'hospitalised' after underage alcohol sales at off-licence

A Chesterfield off-licence has been accused of selling booze to underage children – leaving one schoolgirl ‘hospitalised’.

Wednesday, 22nd January 2020, 11:45 am
Updated Wednesday, 22nd January 2020, 11:48 am

Complaints have been made to council licensing officers about Raj News & Off-Licence, on Baden Powell Road.

It is alleged shop staff are not using CCTV as set out in their premises licence and trying to evade the cameras by putting money through the till before alcohol is dished out ‘through the rear doors’.

Chesterfield Borough Council licensing officer Meredith Ezard says in a report: “On January 14 the licensing department received an email from Coun (Kate) Sarvent voicing her concerns at the activities at Raj News & Off-Licence.

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Raj News and Off-Licence on Baden Powell Road Chesterfield.

“She says that alcohol is being sold to teenagers, some identified as students of Parkside. One girl in particular has been hospitalised due to the cumulative effects of regular alcohol consumption. It is also alleged that to evade the CCTV, money is put through the till and alcohol is given through the rear doors.”

Following the complaints, licensing officers attended to check CCTV and see if the allegations were founded.

“Upon arrival officers spoke with the premise licence holder and when asked if the CCTV was working correctly she responded by saying it was working fine,” documents add.

“When licensing officers asked her to retrieve footage from Friday, January 10 and Wednesday, January 15 the system is showing that no recorded images have been stored which goes against the conditions set out in the premise licence.”

It is claimed the girl was sold 1.5L of Lambrini and one-litre of vodka.

Councillor Kate Sarvent, Chesterfield Borough Council’s cabinet member for town centres and visitor economy, said: “We, the St Leonard’s ward councillors, have been aware of this issue and are working with our colleagues to investigate the allegations further.

“At the council, we take issues such as this very seriously and as such, a review of the license has been submitted.”