A former Blackfen trader is to pay a total of £2000 in fines and costs for illegally trading alcohol at an Off Licence in Sidcup.

ASD Off License situated on Blackfen Road was caught without a premises licence on April 2, last year.

Mahalinger Suthagar was charged with illegally selling, displaying and having in possession alcohol intended for sale, at Bexley Magistrate's Court on January 20.

Mahalinger Suthagar, of Gooseley Lane, London, first applied to Bexley for a transfer of Premises Licence in February 2019.

He was advised to apply for a new Premises Licence, and not to sell alcohol from the premises.

Until processing was complete, Mr Suthagar was advised to apply for a Temporary Events Notice which would enable him to sell alcohol in the interim period.

The notice permitted the sale of alcohol for two weeks and ran out on March 13, 2019.

Mr Suthagar then tried to apply for another temporary licence and was refused by Bexley due to using up his allowance.

At the end of March 2019, he finally applied for a Premises Licence, and until granted was not to permit the sale of alcohol.

In revelation, the off-licence was caught selling a bottle of wine to a Trading Standards Officer who visited the store on April 2, 2019.

When interviewed with an interpreter, Mr Suthagar, said that the alcohol had been sold by a member of staff and claimed that staff knew not to sell the alcohol.

Mr Suthagar failed to instruct staff in his absence and struggled to explain what the Challenge 25 policy was.

Councillor Peter Craske said:

"Mr Suthagar failed to meet strict licencing regulations which are there to prevent crime and disorder and protect the safety of the public, including children.

"He failed to follow the rules and failed to monitor whether or not his staff had sold alcohol when there was no Premises Licence in place.

“Failure to follow legislation creates precedence for others not to comply.

“It will not be tolerated."