Ben Williams has successfully prosecuted Mr Restat Yilmaz, owner of a late-night refreshment premises known as Speedy Peppers in Worksop. After multiple visits from licensing officers at Bassetlaw District Council, the defendant was found to be operating the premises without an SIA operative and with a CCTV system that could not be operated effectively by members of staff in breach of conditions of the premises licence. Both the CCTV condition and the SIA condition were appended to the licence to prevent crime and disorder and to protect the public. Following these offences the Premise Licence lapsed as the Limited Company who held the licence was dissolved. In addition, Mr Yilmaz was also charged with breaches of The Health and Safety at work etc act 1974 relating to a gas installation at the premises which was not sufficient for commercial premises causing a risk of individuals being exposed to C02 Poisoning. Works in default identified a gas leak which could lead to an explosion.

The final charge related to a further breach of the Licensing Act. Following the lapse of the previous licence, a further licence application was submitted by Mr Yilmaz. Owing to the previous compliance issues, the application was refused. Mr Yilmaz was witnessed by Licensing Officers continuing to operate the premises, selling hot food after 11pm and to give the appearance to others that his licence has been re-instated, he placed an SIA operative outside the premises.

The District Judge sitting at Nottingham Magistrates Court made several helpful comments in terms of how she saw the seriousness of matters and expressed that culpability was very high. The Judge noted that this premises was situated in a busy part of central Worksop and that Mr Yilmaz wilfully put members of the public at risk and his actions were deliberate and intentional.

The judge sentenced Mr Yilmaz to 26 weeks imprisonment suspended for 12 months, 200 hours unpaid work and awarded costs in full of £5,125.50.

This case highlights the collaborative approach taken by different departments within the Local Authority; Licensing, Environmental Health and Legal to work together to protect members of the public.

Ben Williams was instructed by Stella Bacon, Principal Solicitor & Deputy Monitoring Officer at Bassetlaw District Council

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