In News & Releases by Clyde Mooney

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The Sydney Junction Hotel is back in the news for the wrong reasons, as the former licensee is convicted of a breach of conditions regarding security patrols.

The popular Hamilton pub escalated into Level 1 of Liquor & Gaming NSW’s much-criticised violent venues list last December, having nearly doubled its number of incidents in the previous recorded 12-month period, to 30 altercations.

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Despite reducing that total by five in the latest count, the improvement wasn’t as much as Merivale’s ivy, and the Sydney Junction (SJH) found itself the highest venue.

One of a range of ongoing “special licence conditions” imposed by L&G for being on the list, aimed at reducing the risk of alcohol-related violence and neighbourhood disturbance, the Hotel was required to have two security officers patrol outside the venue from 11pm on Friday and Saturday nights.

During a compliance operation last September, L&G inspectors found this condition was not being met, and the regulator brought the charge upon licensee Ross Boland.

On Monday (4 June) Boland pleaded guilty to the offence before Newcastle Local Court.

Magistrate David Price cited a clear and consistent message must be sent that liquor licence conditions are fundamentally important, and compliance is mandatory.

He issued a conviction and fined Boland $1,500.

“Venues that fail to provide a safe environment for patrons by breaching licence conditions can expect to face serious consequences, including prosecution action and increased monitoring by Liquor & Gaming NSW,” stated L&G director of compliance operations Sean Goodchild.

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