Case against shop owner postponed after councillors discover he has poor grasp of English and needs an interpreter

PUBLISHED: 16:29 21 January 2014 | UPDATED: 16:29 21 January 2014

Wisbech Off licence. 2A Nene Quay.

Wisbech Off licence. 2A Nene Quay.

Archant

A shop keeper fighting to keep his drinks licence had the case against him adjourned because of his poor English.

Fenland Council licensing committee was forced to postpone Monday’s hearing after finding out Hassan Pispar needed a translator to enable evidence to be discussed.

Councillor Kay Mayor, chairman of the panel, ruled that “we think that it is necessary to adjourn today’s hearing to enable Mr Pispar to have an interpreter present.”

The meeting will resume on February 4 and Cllr Mayor added that “we would recommend that Mr Pispar seeks legal advice and representation for that hearing.”

Police disclosed in a report to councillors that counterfeit tobacco had been found at Mr Pispar’s store in Nene Quay, Wisbech.

In his report Sgt Dave Bax told councillors that Mr Pispar had been fined £200 by Kings Lynn magistrates on January 9 for offences relating to the find.

Sgt Bax said police searched the premises following a tip-off and found the store holder had “bulging pockets” which were full of Jin Ling and Minsk tobaccos.

Foreign packets of Marlboro and Golden Virginia were stashed inside Mr Pispar’s trouser legs.

A further search revealed two black bags of coins hidden under shelving behind the counter and a blue bag containing a large quantity of Golden Virginia tobacco under the bottom shelf of a unit holding bags of sugar.

At the bottom of a shelving unit in a storeroom were two black bags containing more tobacco products.

Sgt Bax said: “I knew the Golden Virginia was counterfeit as I have found this stuff before, it can contain factory floor sweepings, and even asbestos, smoking is bad enough without these added poison.”

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