TWO pubs in Alfreton have been caught selling alcohol to underage teenagers following a sting operation by Trading Standards.
Nine licensed premises were visited where young volunteers posed as customers attempting to buy alcohol.
Two pubs are now under criminal and licensing investigations for serving the youngsters and could face a fine of up to £5,000.
If a pub is caught serving underage drinkers on two occasions they can lose their licence.
Police licensing officer Jamie Pendrill said: “Underage drinking poses a risk to the health and safety of young people and also plays a significant role in anti-social behaviour.
“Work to help licensees in Amber Valley is done on a continual basis by members of the borough’s Community Safety Partnership including the county council, borough council, fire service and the police.
“We take the issue of selling alcohol to under-18s very seriously and we will not tolerate it.”
In one of the pubs which served alcohol to youngsters, staff were issued with an £80 fixed penalty notice. In the other premises a member of staff is facing a possible criminal prosecution.
Both venues will be fully investigated to see what measures are in place to ensure proper ID checks are carried out.
The Amber Valley Community Safety Partnership has a Violence, Alcohol harm and Licensing (VAL) group which helps monitor licensed premises in the borough.
VAL member Inspector Richard Smith, who heads up policing in Amber Valley, said: “Operations such as this are carried out to help reduce alcohol-related incidents in the borough. The partners work very well together and do their best to support licensees, so we will deal strictly with those who flout the law.”
Anyone with information about alcohol being sold to under-18s should contact Derbyshire Police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.