Abbey Street Mini Superstore in Derby may lose drinks licence after 'illicit' alcohol is found
A SHOP accused of selling smuggled vodka containing "extremely harmful" substances could be banned from selling alcohol.
Abbey Street Mini Superstore will find out next week whether or not its licence has been revoked after its owners were accused of committing a number of "serious" trading law offences.
The decision will be made by Derby City Council's licensing team.
In a report to the general licensing sub-committee, trading standards officers say that scientific analysis of alcohol seized from the shop premises confirmed it was "unfit" to drink.
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The report says the sample contained tertiary butanol and iso-propanol, which are typically found in "solvents and cleaning fluids" and render the sample unfit for human consumption.
"They can be extremely harmful if consumed," it adds.
Derbyshire police are also backing a review into the store's licence.
The shop was investigated after parents in Duffield alleged that young people from outside the city were travelling to the shop to buy alcohol, as they were not being asked to prove their age.
A police sergeant visited the store along with a trading standards officer and the duo said they spotted a known illicit brand of vodka on a shelf behind the counter.
Seven bottles were later seized for checks, which led to tertiary butanol and iso-propanol being detected.
The report states: "Illicit products such as these have in the past been found to be manufactured in illicit bottling plants with no quality control or proper health and safety systems in place.
"The products are placed on the market without any duty being paid on them, leading to a loss in revenue to the UK Government."
The seized bottles are also said to have breached the Food Labelling Regulations as there was no indication of the manufacturer, packer or seller.
The owners, Dharmendrasinhji and Suzar Chauhan, were interviewed by police and failed to give exact details of where the illicit alcohol had come from.
The reports says: "The traceability and record keeping was poor and they could not identify exactly where the alcohol was purchased from.
"They stated some of the drinks came from a mixed batch of bottles they purchased from a friend in London (Southall) who was closing his shop."
Mr and Mrs Chauhan were warned in July of the potential offences they were committing and informed that a review of their licence would be sought.
The report says the shop has never been accused previously of failing to comply with trading standards legislation. A decision on its alcohol licence will be made on Tuesday.
Mr Chauhan declined to comment about the report.