John Gaunt & Partners authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority - SRA No. 173393.
Solicitors of England & Wales
© John Gaunt & Partners 2013. All rights reserved worldwide.
Scotland - To Cure - Not to Punish?02 May 2012
The recently reported decision of Sheriff Principal Mhairi Steven raises the question of the purpose of suspending a licence.
Last December Midlothian Licensing Board suspended a licence held by Tesco for 2 days, after a Police Review initiated for a failed test purchase. The Board considered the suspension necessary or appropriate for Protection of Children from Harm, despite a second test having being passed. Furthermore, in their reasons, the Board had made reference to requiring “a fool proof” system to prevent underage alcohol sales. That suspension was quashed by the Sheriff Principal, who in her judgement stated: -
“It was difficult to see how a short period of suspension would prevent a reoccurrence”.
Further, she made reference to the fact that the legislation did not create a regime of strict liability.
This tends to indicate that the suspension in the Sheriffs mind had been used as a punishment rather than an opportunity to cure any defects within the due diligence system adopted by the supermarket.
It would be interesting to see how this point is further developed, especially as the Court of Session date for the LIDL Appeal has now been listed for the 6th and 7th November 2012.
For more details on the Lidl appeal please see our article “