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6 N.J.A.R. 161

Valdivia's Bar, Inc. t/a Danny and Tina's Inn v. Elizabeth City Council-Municipal Board of Alcoholic Beverage Control
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Citation: 6 N.J.A.R. 161
Decision Date: 1981
Synopsis: A local municipality revoked a tavern's license when the president of the corporation which owned the license was found in possession of cocaine on the licensed premises from which drug trafficking could be inferred. The corporation argued that revocation was unreasonable since it was imposed both on the major stockholders (the president) and the minority stockholders who did not know of the drug activity. The administrative law judge assigned to the case found that while the minority stockholders did not know about the drug traffic nor had they ever observed drugs on the premises, the corporation's president had participated in unlawful conduct involving cocaine on the premises. This lack of knowledge, however, could not excuse the other stockholders since licensees, their agents or employees must take all necessary and reasonable precautions to prevent the improper use of their premises. Nor could this lack of knowledge mitigate the penalty to be imposed of the corporate licensee was a principal drug trafficker. Accordingly, the administrative law judge affirmed the revocation of the license. Matthew T. Rinaido and John L. Maddalena, Esqs. attorneys for appellant Marvin Lehman, Esq. attorney for respondent