In Brief
Published:  09 March, 2007

Vandals show no heart

A clean-up operation is taking place at a wine shop in Norwich after pink hearts were spray-painted over its shutters and advertising board. The graffiti at Le Château is thought to have been the work of vandals who have also painted postboxes in the town. A spokeswoman for owner the East of England Co-op Society said: "We are very disappointed that the work that the previous owners did has been ruined, but we have plans to rebrand that store and all the other stores we took over in the coming months."

Supermarket caught in sting

A supermarket in Leicester has been slapped with a one month licence suspension after it was caught selling alcohol to under-18s in a test-purchase sting. The shop on Link Road in Anstey will have its licence suspended until April 1, with a condition that it must sign up to the Challenge 21 scheme and introduce a proof-of-age policy for staff to follow.

Teen used fake driver's licence

A 16-year-old in St Helens, Merseyside was arrested after he attempted to use a forged provisional driving licence to buy alcohol. Police arrived at a pub in the town on Feb 25 after the licensee told them he was suspicious about the boy's age. The teenager, who later admitted he had made the fake licence on his home computer, was arrested after checks showed details on it were fake. He was later reprimanded.

Reading shops' double trouble

Two off-licences in Reading were targeted by armed robbers in the same weekend. A man threatened staff with a gun at Thresher's in Caversham on March 3 at about 8.30pm before taking money from the till. The following day The Hop Inn in Tilehurst was raided by a man who told staff he had a gun. Police say it is too early to say if the incidents are linked.

Masked robbers injure retailer

A drinks store owner was left with cuts and bruises after two masked robbers attacked him. Tim Evans, of Tim's Off-licence in Clacton, was locking up his shop on Feb 23 when two men burst in and demanded cash from the till. After handing them money the pair beat him until he escaped to his store room.

Armed gang raid Co-op

Two Co-op workers were made to hand over cash by men armed with crowbars as they prepared to open the store. Three men broke into the shop in Banbury via the front door on Feb 25 at 6.15am. They made their way to the back of the shop and threatened the female members of staff before taking an unknown amount of cash.

Knife used to steal £45

A robber ran off with £45 after threatening a female sales assistant with a knife. The masked man ran into an off-licence in the Woburn Sands area of Milton Keynes on Feb 25 and demanded cash before leaving the scene by car.

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