The landlord of a pub in Carlisle has landed a court bill of more than £6,000 after he admitted selling and displaying vodka falsely labelled as Smirnoff.

Grahame George Vallance, who runs the Coach and Horses pub on Kingstown Road in Carlisle, admitted selling alcohol that was not of the standard required by the purchaser, he admitted falsely labelling a 1.5l bottle of alcohol as Smirnoff and he admitted failing to provide assistance to someone acting in execution of food safety laws.

The court case followed the investigation of falsely described ‘Smirnoff’ vodka being sold from the pub in May last year by Cumbria County Council’s Trading Standards Service, after they received a tip off.

On testing the contents of the ‘Smirnoff’ bottle behind the bar, Trading Standards Officers discovered that the liquid in the bottle was not genuine Smirnoff vodka, and the had instead been substituted with a different product.

Vallance admitted to Trading Standards that he had been decanting another liquid into a genuine Smirnoff vodka bottle.

During the inspection of the premises, officers also found a falsely labelled 1.5 litre ‘Smirnoff’ vodka bottle which Vallance had quickly and deliberately hidden within the pub cellar.

He was fined a total of £500, was ordered to pay costs of £5,679.50 and a £32 victim surcharge.

John Greenbank, Cumbria County Council’s Trading Standards manager, said: "Trading Standards will follow up on the intelligence we receive in addition to carrying out inspections of local businesses. We do this to ensure that consumers within Cumbria can have confidence in the authenticity and safety of their purchases.

"It also promotes a fair and level playing field for businesses. We hope the outcome of this case will reassure consumers within Cumbria that we consider the truthful description of food and drink products to be a priority area of work in protecting the public.”

Cumbria County Council’s cabinet member for Trading Standards, Celia Tibble added: "This is yet another example of the excellent work carried out by our Trading Standards team to ensure that Cumbrian residents and visitors to the county are protected. The message is clear - if you are falsely describing food or drink you will be publicly held to account."