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Port Macquarie license disqualified for 12 months for offences

Friday 12 June 2015        [PDF,153kb]

A former Port Macquarie licensee has been disqualified from holding a liquor licence or managing a licensed venue for 12 months, been fined $2,300 and ordered to pay $1,800 in investigation costs after breaching laws and verbally abusing Office of Liquor, Gaming & Racing (OLGR) inspectors.

The former licensee of Settlers Inn Hotel at Port Macquarie, Monique Louise Turner, pleaded guilty and was sentenced in Port Macquarie Local Court on 10 June 2015 for seven offences under gaming and liquor laws.

The prosecution action followed an OLGR inspection at about 10.30pm on 28 November 2014 during which two inspectors observed three unsupervised children riding a scooter, office desk chairs and a tricycle in a 'minors authorised area' of the hotel.

When the OLGR officers spoke to the licensee Ms Turner about a lack of supervision for the children, she became abusive and swore at them.

The licensee also refused requests to produce her responsible service of alcohol (RSA) competency card, and failed to comply with an order to provide CCTV footage of the function room where the children had been observed.

As a result, Ms Turner faced seven offences including:

  • Three counts of permitting a person under the age of 18 to enter and remain in a minors’ authorised area of the hotel while not in the company and immediate presence of a responsible adult.
  • One count of failing to comply with a requirement of an inspector to produce her RSA competency card for inspection.
  • Two counts of insulting OLGR inspectors while exercising their powers and duties.
  • One count of failing to comply with a direction to produce CCTV.

Ms Turner was also convicted and fined an additional $200 for permitting a patron to become intoxicated on the licensed premises following a separate inspection by Police.

OLGR Director of Compliance and Enforcement Anthony Keon said: "OLGR inspectors and NSW Police play an important role in ensuring licensed premises are operated responsibly and in line with community expectations.

"Licensees and staff must comply with requests made by inspectors and it’s an offence for any person to wilfully obstruct, delay, hinder or threaten or insult an inspector in the exercise of their duties.

"For inspectors to be subject to a torrent of verbal abuse and swearing and a lack of cooperation from a licensee while performing their duties is not acceptable, and the court’s decision to disqualify the licensee for 12 months sends a very clear message that this type of irresponsible behaviour will not be tolerated and has no place in the industry."

The court outcome follows the recent prosecution of another Port Macquarie venue with both matters following joint licensed venue compliance operations on the Mid North Coast by OLGR and the NSW Police Force.