Five Ribble Valley off-licence staff fined for selling alcohol to children

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SHOP assistants were fined after they were caught selling alcohol to children during a test purchase operation in the Ribble Valley.

On Friday, June 29th, police and trading standards officers visited nine off-licences across Clitheroe, Whalley and Longridge as part of a crackdown on underage drinking.

Five off-licence staff were fined after they sold white wine to the 16-year-old test purchaser.

Licensing Officer for Eastern Division Sgt Jason Middleton said: “Children on the streets at night are very vulnerable, especially if they have been drinking. We’ll be working closely with Trading Standards to crack down on the illegal sale of alcohol to children and will take robust action against anyone who is caught selling alcohol to under-18s. We will also work with the shops in question to ensure that they are doing everything they possibly can to prevent any further sales to underage children.”

Paul Noone, head of Lancashire County Council Trading Standards, added: “Selling alcohol to under age people is completely irresponsible and not only leads to anti-social behaviour, but can cause serious health problems.

“We carry out test purchases on a regular basis in partnership with the police to identify those businesses and individuals who think its ok to do this. We will support businesses that genuinely want to comply with the law and we are working with those businesses that failed our recent test to improve their systems.”

Anyone with information or concerns about underage drinking can contact police on 101. Alternatively people can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or report it on-line at Crimestoppers-uk.org. No personal details are taken, information is not traced or recorded and you will not go to court.