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Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005

Section 102 – Sale of alcohol to a child or young person.

210.This section makes it an offence for anyone to sell alcohol to children or young people anywhere.  This is a widening of the existing offence provided for in section 68 of the Licensing (Scotland) Act 1976, which is restricted to the licence holder, or an employee or agent of the licence holder in licensed premises.

211.Subsection (2) provides a defence if the seller believed that the purchaser was 18 or over and either took all reasonable steps to establish the purchaser’s age or nobody could reasonably have suspected from the purchaser’s appearance that he was under 18.

212.The seller is deemed to have taken all reasonable steps if he or she had seen evidence of the purchaser’s age and that evidence would have convinced a reasonable person.  However, if it is proved by the prosecution that the evidence of age was such that no reasonable person would have been convinced by it (for example if the proof of age was either an obvious forgery or clearly belonged to another person), the defence would fail.

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Text created by the Scottish Government to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes were introduced in 1999 and accompany all Acts of the Scottish Parliament except those which result from Budget Bills.


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