New crackdown on fake booze in Newham

A New Year crackdown on the sale of illegal alcohol has been launched in Newham.

Newham Council enforcement officers raided over off-licences, shops and supermarkets last year. Alcohol believed to be fake, counterfeit, or illegal because no duty was paid, has been confiscated from almost 80 premises. Trading Standards joined forces with the council’s licensing police and licensing teams in a multi-edged swoop.

Ian Corbett, Newham Council’s Executive Member for Infrastructure and Environment, said: “This was an impressive haul but we are not resting on our laurels. Our job is to ensure shop keepers who sell illegal booze and play hard and fast with the law are brought to book. They are ripping off the tax payer too by evading duty they must pay by law on wine and spirits.”

Seven premises had had their licences to sell alcohol revoked in 2011. Two of these were East Ham off-licences and the haul included:

About 38,000 cigarettes, 120 litres of wine and 21 litres of spirits;

Almost 50 bottles of counterfeit Jacob’s Creek, 60 bottles of spirits and 860 bottles of duty-evaded wine.

There were also 12 seizures in Manor Park, 15 in Upton Park and Plaistow, nine in Stratford, eight in Canning Town and the Royal Docks areas, 18 in East Ham and 14 in Forest Gate.

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Some yielded huge hauls of illegal booze.

Counterfeit alcohol tends to be rebottled wine where the cheaper version is poured into a more expensive bottle. Fake alcohol is made in illegal factories in the UK.

Shoppers are being advised to watch out for tell tale signs of illegality:

*Spelling mistakes on the label

*Bottles of the same product look different

*Bottles not filled to same level

*Label not straight

If you spot these items, contact Consumer Direct on 01622 626520 or