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Breach of premises licence conditions

What should you do if you find yourself in a Breach of Premises Licence Conditions situation?

Perhaps, at the time of licensing reform, you applied for a conversion and variation of your Premises Licence and obtained later hours. As part of the process you agreed to a standard condition from the Police regarding CCTV. It requires the provision of good quality images to the Police upon request in the event that there has been an incident. There have been some incidents at your premises over the last few months but nothing of any great note.

You have complied and provided the necessary footage to the Police when they have required it.

You have just been contacted by the Licensing Officer who is saying that you are in breach of your licence because the footage obtained from your premises on each occasion was of inadequate quality.

Would you know what to do?

Breach of your licence conditions can lead to an unlimited fine, six months imprisonment, or both in respect of each offence. Imprisonment would be very unlikely in this case. It is likely that you will be invited to an interview under caution to “give your side of the story”. Do not go to the interview without having a Solicitor present. What you say in the interview may be used against you later in Court proceedings.

You should instruct a Solicitor in any event. The quality of your CCTV system may have been signed off by the Police’s Crime Reduction Officer at the time of its installation. Have any changes been made since? Have they been carried out by an authorised supplied on whose expertise you relied? All of these things may amount to a due diligence defence and you will need advice upon this.

Once again high quality legal advice is essential!

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