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14 December 2020

Crackdown on online unlicensed alcohol sales delivers fines

Issued by Liquor & Gaming NSW

Liquor & Gaming NSW has taken enforcement action against three men and two women, including issuing a total of $3,740 in fines, for illegally supplying alcohol through online platform Airtasker.

The offences occurred in Haymarket and Parramatta as part of an undercover operation, with alcohol being delivered to undercover inspectors at inflated prices such as $120 for bottles of vodka and tequila.

Liquor & Gaming Director of Compliance Dimitri Argeres said the unlicensed trading of alcohol through apps and internet platforms has been an on-going concern and anyone caught doing so will face significant enforcement action.

“The sale of alcohol without a licence is one of the most serious offences under the NSW LiquorAct. This includes sales through online platforms or ‘tasking’ apps”, Mr Argeres said.

“Although Airtasker has been working with authorities to remove and prevent all alcohol related tasks from being posted, we will still be warning the company to reinforce the seriousness of the breaches identified.”

Mr Argeres said unlicensed alcohol delivery caries significant risks of alcohol-related harm such as supply to minors or intoxicated people.

“Online platforms like Airtasker receive a percentage of each transaction, and this also contravenes the legislation,” he said.

“It is the responsibility of both the online platform and the individual tasker or seller involved to ensure all necessary licences and approvals are in place.

“The penalty notices issued through this operation should send a strong message to other digital marketplaces and individual sellers that this conduct will not be permitted.

“Liquor & Gaming NSW will continue to conduct covert testing and taking strong action against anyone caught selling liquor without a valid licence. Penalties can include a 12-month term of imprisonment.”