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Stings Target Businesses Selling Alcohol To Minors

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NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) – The state of Texas has a warning for students trying to buy alcohol while on Spring Break this week.  Officials with the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC) are planning to conduct a minimum of 600 undercover stings.

TABC agents will be everywhere from convenience and grocery stores, to restaurants and bars. According to TABC Captain Mark Meen, the goal of the operation isn’t necessarily to catch youngsters in the commission of crime. “The purpose is not to, so much to catch violators but to deter the violations in the first place,” he said.

The majority of sting operations this week will involve a minor, working with the TABC, going into an establishment and attempting to purchase alcohol. Any retail employee caught selling alcohol to a minor will be issued a criminal citation.

Meen explained that the threat of losing a liquor license or being fined may encourage businesses to be proactive when it comes to preventing the sale of alcohol to minors. “Our main concern is to educate our retailers, that are permitted by TABC, the stores, the nightclubs, the liquors store, ahead of time.”

Officials say it’s important for retailers to educate their staff about the law and ensure that employees are taking the necessary steps to verify that they are not selling alcohol beverages to anyone under the age of 21.

In the state of Texas, selling alcohol to a minor is Class A Misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail and a $4,000 fine. In addition to the employee facing charges, the retail location can also be fined or lose their license.

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