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Police object to alcohol licence changes for Ilford party venue ‘attracting gang issues’ from across London

PUBLISHED: 07:00 21 March 2017

The Praba Banqueting Hall where a man was stabbed outside and a gun was fired

The Praba Banqueting Hall where a man was stabbed outside and a gun was fired

Archant

A party venue in Ilford is attracting gang related activity from across London, police officers have claimed.

In a report to Redbridge Council’s licensing sub-committee officers say they are “increasingly concerned” with the manner in which Praba Banqueting Suite in High Road, Ilford, is run.

A 22-year-old was knifed outside the premises at 5am on February 5 in the midst of a brawl, and a gun was also fired.

Police have been called to the venue, and forced to cancel events, several other times in the first two months of the year.

Now Praba Banqueting Suite Limited is applying to have the premises license transferred to it after a different company Praba Banqueting Limited surrendered its license on February 18 after the stabbing.

Both businesses are registered to the same address.

Ahead of the meeting at Redbridge Town Hall, in Ilford, on March 29, Redbridge Police officers have submitted their objections to the transfer.

In a letter to the sub-committee, Pc Ian Taylor said police had received information on more than one occasion over the potential for serious crime and disorder at the venue.

He said: “This has related in the venue voluntarily closing on two occasions since New Year’s Eve 2016.

“Police have held meetings with the owners of the venue giving advice and impressing upon them their responsibilities as owners.

“This advice, police believe has gone unheeded leading to an event being booked at the venue which has resulted in serious crime and disorder, an investigation into attempted murder, a threat to public safety and public nuisance.”

He added that officers have received information “indicating that the venue is attracting gang related issues from other parts of London”.

After the banqueting suite came under new ownership last year, officers say they have become “increasingly concerned” at how it is run.

On New Year’s Eve, the venue voluntarily cancelled an event after police warned they had “information relating to serious crime and disorder.”

A day later, it held a private event that police licensing officers were not aware of, where a victim reported that their bag was stolen during a “commotion.”

Again, on January 28, the venue cancelled an event on the advice of police, who believed that serious crime and disorder could occur.

However, on February 5, a man was stabbed in the stomach outside a private party there.

When emergency services attended, they were “confronted with several hundred people” who were “anti police”.

On February 10, officers held a meeting with one of the venue owners, who couldn’t recall many details about the event, but said “Michael” had booked it.

Pc Taylor said: “Police licensing have little faith that the current owners are running the venue to an acceptable standard.”

The officer’s report also asks that Hari Krishnan is not named as designated premises supervisor due to receiving a conviction in 2013 under Schedule 4 of the Licensing Act 2003.

Praba Banqueting Suite has been approached for comment.

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