Boots Barred Sports Bar passed off cheap booze as real thing

Preston Crown Court
Preston Crown Court

A bar supervisor from Lytham has been fined after passing off a cheap knock-off herbal liqueur as Jagermeister.

Giuseppe Fontana, 35, of South Street, Lytham, used a less potent drink, passing it off as the German liqueur, Preston Crown Court heard.

It appeared to be dissimilar to Jagermeister and similar to a cheaper product called Messerschmitt

He was the premises supervisor at the Boots Barred Sports Bar in Hesketh Bank, near Preston, which was investigated after a customer complained to Lancashire Trading Standards.

The bar was owned by David Dempster and Shaun Hartley through two limited companies, Astute Trading Limited, based on Blackpool Road, Newton, and the now defunct Serlect Services Ltd.

Fonanta pleaded guilty alongside Astute Trading, to selling substituted Jagermeister, contrary to food safety laws.

The firm was fined £2,250 with £2,250 costs while Fontana must pay a £225 fine £150 costs, Judge Stuart Baker ruled.

Preston Crown Court heard on September 9, 2015, two Trading Standards officers attended at the bar, which was struggling financially, the court heard.

Prosecuting, David Traynor said: “The barman retrieved a bottle of Jagermeister from the fridge behind the bar, which bore the normal Jagermeister label indicating the alcohol by volume was 35 per cent.

“It appeared to be dissimilar to Jagermeister and similar to a cheaper product called Messerschmitt.”

Officers purchased three 50ml samples which were sent for analysis, he said. The volume of alcohol in the liquid was just over 20 percent.

Invoices from a cash and carry store for an account used by Fontana showed that from May to November 2015, 28 bottles of Messerschmidt were bought and just one bottle of Jagermeister.

In interview Fontana said the bottle sampled may have been bought before took over responsibility. David Dempster was interviewed and said he did knew nothing about drinks substitutions.