Retailers have been urged not to put profit before people after officers seized 370 bottles of knock-off wine from two stores in Lincolnshire.

Both AK News and The Grocery Shop in Ingoldmells were let off with a warning at a licensing review hearing after officers seized contraband wine in a raid.

The owner of The Grocery Store admitted buying the wine from a man he didn’t know out of the back of his van. He then sold some of it on to the owners of AK News. Both he and the owner of AK News, expressed regret that they had sold the product through their stores.

Sgt Kimble Enderby said: “The decision of the Licensing Committee, whilst it takes into account the previous good character of the stores, is a strict warning regarding their future conduct. The warning indicates that they are both effectively on probation and any future transgression may result in the suspension or revocation of the premises licence.

“We would advise all retailers to act responsibly and purchase their stock from reputable retail outlets.

“Purchasing alcohol in this way is a criminal act and irresponsible, there is no way of knowing the quality of the goods being bought. Don’t put profit before people, if the price appears too good to be true, it probably is.

“Lincolnshire Police Alcohol Licensing is committed to the investigation, detection and prevention of all offences associated with or around licensed premises.

“We would actively encourage members of the public to come forward with any information of this kind of product being offered for sale either by contacting the police directly or ringing Crime Stoppers anonymously.”