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Shop owner fined for under-age sale.

November 12, 2010

A Walsall shopkeeper has been fined almost £1,000 after selling lager to a 15 year old during a test purchase operation.

Mohinder Pal, the owner of Jimmy’s Food and Wines on Lichfield Road, Rushall, admitted selling alcohol to a person under 18, in contravention of the Licensing Act 2003.

The test purchase operation was organised by Walsall Trading Standards and is part of an ongoing programme of checks to ensure that licensed premises are upholding their responsibility to protect children from harm.

Shop and bar owners and their staff are personally responsible for checking that the person they sell alcohol to is over the age of 18. Penalties for selling to an under 18 range from a Penalty Notice of £80 up to a maximum fine of £10,000 and six months imprisonment. A venue that repeatedly breaches this law can also face the suspension or revocation of their licence.

Anyone who sells alcohol should make sure that they are completely satisfied that the person in front of them is old enough to buy the product. If you have any doubts, or the customer cannot provide identification, then the only safe opti0n is to refuse to sell.

Further advice on how to discourage and prevent under-age sales can be obtained from Walsall Council Trading Standards.

BOGUS CHARITY COLLECTOR JAILED FOR 17 WEEKS

October 19, 2010

The following press release was published recently.  In the next few months, it is likely that there will be more charity collections in pubs and clubs. Licensees are urged to make sure that anyone they allow in their venue to collect for charity are properly authorised.

Anyone wishing to collect money for charity should be licensed by the local authority in the area of the collection. The collector should show this authority on request. If they don’t or can’t, you should ask yourself why not. Chances are the collector is not genuine.

A BOGUS charity collector who conned people out of cash by posing as a cancer charity fundraiser has been jailed for 17 weeks.

Nicholas Armson, 26, from Old Hill, tricked people into giving him money towards Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life by claiming he was being sponsored by St Paul’s Church in Blackheath.

 Armson was arrested on October 13 outside the Prince of Wales Pub in Bloxwich when an officer spotted him emerging from the pub with sponsorship forms and £13 in sponsorship money.

 DC Ian Hadley, a financial investigator for the force and the arresting officer in the case, said: “Although I am based at Bloxwich, I have previously worked at both Old Hill and Smethwick police stations.

“I recognised Armson straight away from my time at Old Hill and was aware a man fitting his description was wanted for a similar scam in Sandwell.

“I have lost close friends to cancer and have a huge amount of respect for the work Cancer Research UK do. I recently participated in a raft race to raise funds for the charity and I know how much time and effort is put in by genuine people not only participating in the fundraising, but also collecting the sponsorship. “

He added: “People like Armson prey on the kindness of members of the pubic for their own gain and it is unacceptable.

“Hopefully this result will send out a clear message that if you break the law you will be caught and punished. It should act as a deterrent to anyone who thinks this type of crime is acceptable.”

Armson was sentenced at Walsall Magistrate’s Court where he was also ordered to pay the £13 he had collected to Cancer Research UK.

Door supervisor found guilty of assault

September 15, 2010

A door supervisor has been found guilty of assault following an incident at a pub in Walsall town centre. Lennie Greenaway, aged 25, from Birmingham, was seen to push a customer out of a doorway. The customer fell to the ground and was knocked unconscious when his head hit the pavement.

Following a trial, which ended last Thursday (9/9/10) Greenaway was convicted of Common Assault and magistrates fined him £375, with costs of £300 and a £15 victim surcharge. Greenaway was also ordered to pay £100 compensation.

Sergeant John De-Hayes from the Walsall Borough Licensing Team said

“Door supervisors have a difficult and sometimes dangerous job. Occasionally they have to use a reasonable degree of force to remove or restrain people who are causing problems. In this case, excessive and unnecessary force was used and although the injuries received were relatively minor, there was a potential for much more serious injury. While we support the work that door supervisors do in keeping venues safe, they are not immune from prosecution when they behave inappropriately.”

**UPDATE**

Following the trial, Mr Greenaway appealed to the Crown Court against conviction. The appeal hearing was held on Friday 11th February. The appeal was dismissed and the conviction still stands.

What does the future hold?

September 14, 2010

A number of people have asked how the town centre policing operation will be affected by talks of police budget cuts and financial restraint.

In relation to budgets and resources, no definite figures have been published. There has been rumour and speculation, but no decisions have been taken yet.

In the meantime, we will continue to maintain a highly visible and proactive presence in areas where we anticipate alcohol related disorder.

Once we have a clearer picture of how budgets will look, we will undertake a review of Operation Be Safe, to ensure that we continue to provide a safe environment for visitors to Walsall, without compromising the policing service to the rest of the borough.

If you have any comments or suggestions, please feel free to contact us.

Cocaine + Alcohol = Danger

September 10, 2010

For some people, a night out at the weekend involves the use of two recreational drugs. Alcohol and cocaine.

In most cases, the sale and consumption of alcohol is strictly controlled, whereas the supply of cocaine is unlawful, unregulated and poses serious risks to health.

Recent studies have shown that combining alcohol and cocaine creates a whole new chemical in the body – COCAETHYLENE.

Alcohol Policy UK have published a number of papers about the effects of this chemical on the body, but the upshot is that drinking excessively and taking cocaine at the same time can have serious health implications.  Researchers have also shown a link between violent crime and the effects of cocaethylene.

Please take time to check out some of the links that follow – this is one of the reasons we regularly deploy drug sniffer dogs in Walsall, to deter people from carrying and using drugs like cocaine.

Originally published by Alcohol Policy UK

As part of a series of drug awareness clips, Oxfordshire Drug and Alcohol Action Team (DAAT) have released a YouTube clip to raise awareness of cocaethylene, a unique compound produced when mixing alcohol and cocaine. Earlier this year the AERC Alcohol Academy produced a Cocaethyene briefing paper [pdf].

Other information resources include the www.drinkingwithcharlie.co.uk website and Nottingham’s ‘heart and soul’ campaign. For further drugs information see www.talktofrank.com or visit www.drinking.nhs.uk for alcohol advice and information. The OASIS website offers a ‘self-help’ approach for alcohol and cocaine users.

Beware of e-mails from the Tax Office

September 8, 2010

You have no doubt heard on the news that HM Revenue and Customs have managed to muck up the PAYE system so that millions of people who have overpaid will now receive refunds, while others have underpaid and may have to stump up more.

 

It has not taken the criminal fraternity long to latch on to this and scammers are already busily sending out e-mails purporting to be from HMRC informing the recipient that they are due a refund and to send their details for the payment to be made.

 

This is a ‘phishing’ exercise designed to obtain bank details so the scammer can fraudulently remove funds from the victim’s account. 

 

HMRC DO NOT inform taxpayers of a rebate/refund by e-mail, or invite them to complete an online form to receive a repayment.  The fraudulent e-mail should be ignored: under NO CIRCUMSTANCES should a response be sent.

 

For more information, including examples, please visit HM Customs and Revenue website at www.hmrc.gov.uk/security/examples.htm

 

Please spread this message and possibly prevent someone from becoming a victim.

Door supervisor charged following joint investigation

August 9, 2010

West Midlands Police

Click to visit the SIA web site

A 26 year old door supervisor, who worked at clubs in Walsall, will appear in court this month charged with fraud, after it was discovered he failed to disclose previous convictions on an application for his licence.

The man from Leamore will appear at Walsall Magistrates Court on 17th August 2010, charged with fraud, following a joint investigation between Walsall Police and the Security Industry Authority (SIA). The SIA regulate the licensing of door supervisors, who must disclose any relevant convictions on their application forms.

Sergeant John De-Hayes, from the Walsall Borough Licensing Team said

“we work closely with the SIA to make sure that door supervisors in Walsall are properly licensed. Door supervisors play a vital role in minimising the risk of crime and disorder around pubs and clubs, so it is essential that the public can rely on us to make sure that unqualified or unsuitable people are not put in a position of responsibility. “

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