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Booze ban for newsagent caught selling to kids

PUBLISHED: 14:47 10 December 2008 | UPDATED: 15:48 25 August 2010

A NEWSAGENT who thought he was legally within his rights to sell kids booze has been banned for life from owning an alcohol licence.

A NEWSAGENT who thought he was legally within his rights to sell kids booze has been banned for life from owning an alcohol licence.

Sellathurai Sivanesasuntharam proprietor of Hari News, Midhurst Hill, Bexleyheath was handed the ban last Monday at Bexley Magistrates Court when he was found guilty of selling alcohol to a child in a test purchase.

Bexley council's licensing sub-committee revoked the alcohol licence at his shop on September 24. The committee said they were particularly concerned when one of the two licence holders, Mr Sivanesasuntharam, told them "that alcohol should not be sold to children under 16 years of age".

The court fined him £2,500 and ordered him to pay £400 towards the council's costs.

This means the shop is no longer allowed to sell alcohol and Mr Sivanesasuntharam will no longer be allowed to authorise the sale of alcohol anywhere in England or Wales.

This comes after the shop failed two test purchases organised by the council.

On July 2, a 16-year-old boy bought two cans of Foster's lager without being asked his age.

And on December 22 last year, a 15-year-old girl bought a 375ml bottle of Smirnoff vodka and again was not asked for her age or to show identification.

Before this licence review which began in July, Mr Sivanesasuntharam already had two previous convictions for under age sales.

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