Party planner whose last function ended in shooting refused permission to put on another llford event

A shooting and a stabbing took place at Praba. Picture: Matthew Clemenson

A shooting and a stabbing took place at Praba. Picture: Matthew Clemenson - Credit: Archant

A party organiser, whose last event ended with a stabbing and gunfire, has been refused permission to hold another event next month.

Redbridge Council’s licensing committee today (October 23) turned down Carlos Costa’s application to hold an Angola Independence Day celebration at Empire Banqueting Suite, High Road, Ilford on November 10 from 11pm to 5am.

“Obviously we refused because the applicant wasn’t even in attendance the last time he put on an event. So we couldn’t trust he would turn up this time,” said the committee’s chairwoman Cllr Ruth Clark after the meeting.

“Someone was shot last time.”

Mr Costa did not attend the meeting, which lasted for around an hour before the committee made its decision, she said.

“Technically, he could have gone on with this event until 3am because the owner has a late licence. But he wanted to extend it to 5am,” Cllr Clark added.

“I’m glad that he asked for the temporary events notice because it flagged it up to us.

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“We said to the police we did not want him putting on an event at all.”

The means that Empire Banqueting Suite can hold events until 3am providing they do not involve Mr Costa. If he is involved, police can serve Empire with a closure notice, Cllr Clark explained.

Ahead of the meeting the police had made a formal representation to Redbridge Council against granting the licence and said his lack of control at previous events had a direct link with crime and disorder.

“Had the event not been allowed to run over its allocated finish time of 5am then it is unlikely that a male would have been shot,” said Pc Oisin Daly, licensing officer, referring to the incident in February 2017.

“In spite of there being security at that event, two firearms were smuggled into the venue.

“Costa failed in his duty to uphold his licensing objectives.

Redbridge police said that the Praba nightclub was a scene of “carnage” after the last event with lots of drink bottles, signs of drug taking, and discarded clothes and shoes.

There was also evidence of bullet damage to the ceiling.

Mr Costa said on his application that with his “wide experience in this field” he would ensure that licensing objectives, health and safety and Challenge 21 policies would be carried out to “prevent harm”.

He wrote: “The main reasons for applying for late licensing activity is because we will carry on entertainment activities prior to music and dance such as cocktail reception, fashion show and best dress of the night will be awarded.

“The sale by retail of alcohol, the provision of late entertainment and dancing will be carried out only on the premises.