AN off-licence which was previously prosecuted for selling counterfeit alcohol will be thrown under the microscope after the council found an illegal worker.

Supersave on Northumberland Avenue had its licence suspended for six weeks in 2008 for selling booze to teenagers and was fined hundreds of pounds for selling vodka harmful to humans three years ago.

The Whitley store is now at risk of losing its licence after immigration officers acted on intelligence on May 17 and found a 30-year-old Indian man, who was being paid £5 an hour cash in hand.

Reading Borough Council's Licensing Applications Sub-Committee will meet on December 14 to hear Alpeshkumar Patel defend his business.

Richard French, a member of the council's Licensing team, said: "A combination of immigration issues and a whole host of licence condition breaches have led to the tea taking this final serious step in reviewing the premises licence.

"The employment of illegal workers is to be regarded as a crime that should be taken particularly seriously and that revocation of the premises licence - even in the first instance - should be seriously considered.

"The issues identified in the two inspections are of particular concern given that the premises was reviewed and the licence suspended in 2008 for selling alcohol on two occasions to a 15-year-old child.

"Due to the seriousness of the crimes discovered at the premises and the undermining of the licensing objectives, the licensing team respectfully submit that the premises licence should be revoked.

"Allowing this premises to continue to operate with the benefit of a premises licence will merely serve to perpetuate the criminal activity and human exploitation already apparent from the findings of the authority."

Mr Patel admitted to two offences in relation to selling dodgy vodka in 2014 and was fined £600, made to pay a victim surcharge of £60 and pay the council £1,706 in court costs.

The council conducted a follow-up meeting in October - nearly five months after the illegal worker was found - and continued to be disappointed by the lack of staff training and records.

Staff also seemed to be unaware of the Challenge 18 policy, which was alarming given the offences in 2008.