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Big Brother is watching but not recording

My CCTV system did not record, have I breached my licence conditions?

Q:  My pub has a very modern CCTV system, which also forms part of the conditions on my premises licence.  I have the system regularly maintained and in fact only two weeks ago it was given a clean bill of health.  I have just had a visit from a Police Licensing Officer requesting some footage from an alleged handbag theft.  I have tried to download the footage but it seems that while the system is monitoring it is no longer recording.  The Police Licensing Officer has threatened to prosecute me for breach of licence conditions and I am not sure what to do?

A:  Although on the face of it there seems to be a breach of the CCTV conditions a due diligence defence is available to you and part of that covers the situation where the breach has arisen as a result of someone else’s actions.  You need to obtain a letter from the CCTV engineer hopefully accepting that the malfunction of the system has arisen as a result of the maintenance /service which was carried out upon it.  This does unfortunately happen and you should not be blamed where you have engaged a professional to carry out work that has gone wrong.  Such a letter produced to the Police should hopefully be an end to the matter.  You should perhaps then invite the Police to come to the premises and see that the system is working properly again. 

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