POLICE and trading standards got more than they bargained for after carrying out a check on an off-licence in Sutton Bridge.
Bargain Booze, in Bridge Street, was one of a series of premises where test purchases were carried out to see if they were selling alcohol and tobacco to underage children as part of a joint operation across Boston and South Holland.
The shop did sell age-restricted products, but after officers moved in to issue a fixed penalty to the man behind the counter, they discovered he was in the country illegally.
Sgt Jock Watt, of Lincolnshire Police county licensing team, said: “In these circumstances where shops fail, if it is the owner who made the sale, we would prosecute and if it’s just someone working behind the counter we would issue an £80 fixed penalty.
“When that happens we need to make sure the person is who they say they are, and in this case when checks were made it was discovered this man was not cleared to even live in this country, let alone work.”
The man, believed to be from India, was detained by the UK Border Agency, which has said it intends to take steps to remove him from the country as soon as possible.
Sgt Watt said the owner of Bargain Booze could now face having his licence to sell alcohol revoked following a review.
He said: “As an illegal worker was found in the shop, which also sold alcohol to children, we will now going to look at the licence very carefully and that could result in conditions being placed on it or it even being revoked.”