Restaurant has licence revoked after being found employing illegal workers

A restaurant found to be employing illegal workers has now had its licence revoked.

Thursday, 19th September 2019, 11:12 am
Updated Thursday, 19th September 2019, 12:32 pm
It has now had its licence revoked. Photo: Google Maps

Immigration officers from the Home Office visited Cookson Spice, in Chester-le-Street, back in November 2017. As a result, they discovered a number of staff members who did not have the right to work in the UK.

Extra conditions were then added to the restaurant’s licence.

Following a joint operation by immigration officers and licensing enforcement officers from Durham County Council in May 2019, further breaches were found. These included the discovery of further illegal workers at the premises and breaches of licence conditions.

Durham County Council reviewed the premises licence and at a recent meeting, members of the authority’s statutory licensing sub-committee decided to revoke it.

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Joanne Waller, Durham County Council’s head of community protection, said: “Continued failings with the management and running of Cookson Spice put the public at risk and undermined licensing law.

“It is essential that premises are managed, maintained and operated so as to ensure the continued promotion of the licensing objectives, protection of the public and compliance with the Licensing Act.

“Furthermore, by enabling people to work illegally, employers are supporting illegal migration, which often sees people putting their lives at risk or leaving themselves vulnerable to exploitative employers.

“It also enables employers to undercut legitimate businesses and can be linked to other labour market abuse such as tax evasion, breach of the national minimum wage and exploitative working conditions.”