Crackdown on teenage booze sales

SPOT-checks on stores selling alcohol to underage drinkers found almost half were breaking the law.The initiative was carried out in west Suffolk on the same day that hundreds of teenagers celebrated A-level success and the joint partnership behind it hoped the poor results would serve as a timely warning to off-licences.

SPOT-checks on stores selling alcohol to underage drinkers found almost half were breaking the law.

The initiative was carried out in west Suffolk on the same day that hundreds of teenagers celebrated A-level success and the joint partnership behind it hoped the poor results would serve as a timely warning to off-licences.

Random checks on shops across west Suffolk found that 40 per cent of stores sold alcohol to underage customers last Thursday.

Now the West Suffolk Local Strategic Partnership (LSP), which organised the operation, has warned store owners that it is on the lookout for anyone breaking the law.

John Griffiths, LSP chairman, said: “We hope that this test will serve to prompt off-licences to tighten up their approach to underage alcohol sales - especially as the GCSE results will be coming out soon.

“We are continuing our training through the West Suffolk LSP's Put A Cork In It campaign and will be focusing on raising awareness amongst more off-licences in September and October.”

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During the checks two children aged 14 and 16 bought alcohol from four out of ten stores. Fixed Penalty Notices were issued to those breaking the law and trading standards will now be making inquiries in relation to possible offences committed by the owners.