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Prescription drugs found in Southall off-License

Sat 28 Oct 2023
Ealing Council suspended the license of King Quality Food, located at 72 King Street, Southall, following the discovery of illegal items on the premises, including unmarked prescription drugs.

During the licensing sub-committee meeting, Cllr Anthony Kelly expressed bewilderment when an explanation was given for the presence of these drugs, which included medication for high blood pressure.

The licensee's representative, Surendra Panchal, claimed that locals were using the shop as a place to store their prescriptions while attending a nearby temple.


However, Cllr Kelly found this explanation perplexing, given that the drug packages could easily fit in someone's bag, pocket, or car.

Council officer Shane Elliot's report recommended revoking the premises' license and revealed the discovery of a kilo of Indian tobacco and 5kg of poppy seeds.

When questioned about the poppy seeds, Mr. Elliot suggested they could be classified as opiates in the right hands.

Mr. Panchal countered this assertion, explaining that the poppy seeds could be used for various culinary and domestic purposes.


While admitting his client's possession of Indian tobacco, Mr. Panchal apologized on his behalf.

The panel learned that Mr. Singh had held his license since 2019 and had not previously encountered issues with illicit products.

Despite the panel acknowledging this, Cllr Julian Galant expressed concern about Mr. Singh's conduct. He lied about the presence of more illicit substances on the premises that were found by a police sniffer dog.

The panel was not happy with Mr Singh's conduct and found his explanation for the presence of prescription drugs, including diabetes medication, to be unsatisfactory.


In response, Mr. Panchal proposed additional conditions, including the requirement for the license holder to be present during all licensable activities and extra training for Mr. Singh.

The panel accepted these proposals and, after a brief deliberation, decided to suspend King Quality Food's license for a month.

Cllr Kelly emphasized in his closing remarks that he remained sceptical of the explanation for the presence of prescription drugs and stressed that there should be no prescription or controlled medicines on the premises, or the license may face revocation.

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