Beware counterfeit alcohol after haul of fake wine seized

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SHOPPERS in Hucknall are being urged to be eagle-eyed after a haul of counterfeit wine was seized from an off-licence in north Nottinghamshire.

Forty bottles of fake booze was found at an independent retailer, which has not been named. It was presented as the well-known brand Jacob’s Creek but was uncovered as counterfeit when a spelling error in the small print was spotted on the rear label.

Trading standards officers had visited the shop several times and saw that the alcohol was described as ‘Wine of Austrlia’ instead of ‘Wine of Australia’.

Other labelling on the bottles appeared to be convincing copies but officers described the counterfeit wine as being “very low quality and of substandard taste”.

Samples of the wine have been sent off for laboratory tests to check if it presents any danger if drunk. The retailer will be interviewed and a decision taken on whether they will be prosecuted through the courts.

The discovery is part of an ongoing crackdown on the sale of counterfeit booze throughout Nottinghamshire.

Coun Mick Murphy (Con), of Hucknall, who is lead member for public protection at Notts County Council, said: “Counterfeit alcohol is a growing problem which we are receiving more and more intelligence about.

“Counterfeiters are not only evading duty on the products, the public are also paying a premium for a product that is not the real thing and may not be safe. Reputable businesses selling genuine goods are being cheated out of trade.

“Trading standards officers will continue to check alcohol sales and, where necessary, seize suspected counterfeit goods and prosecute.”

Shoppers are advised to check labelling and buy only from reputable retailers. Anyone concerned should call Consumer Direct on 08454 040506.

OUR PHOTO shows Coun Murphy with the fake Jacob’s Creek wine.