Judge sides with council in row about Karma

143014'Karma ,formerly Boleyns, on St Thomas Street'Picture by Neil Silk'23/07/14
143014'Karma ,formerly Boleyns, on St Thomas Street'Picture by Neil Silk'23/07/14

Scarborough Council has won the first round in its legal battle with Scarborough’s biggest nightclub.

The council is challenging an appeal from the owners of Boleyn’s, now known as Karma, after it had its license removed by the authority in December last year.

At Scarborough Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday, Leo Charalambides, acting as counsel for the owner of Karma’s, Wayne Morriss, argued that the council should not have held the initial sub-committee hearing because the review application was ‘vexatious and frivolous’ and the council should not have accepted it as a valid application.

For this reason he argued that the decision to revoke the nightclub’s licence should not stand.

However, District Judge Lower found in favour of the council on the basis that the court did not have the jurisdiction to stop the appeal and the council, as licensing authority, was absolutely correct in allowing the review to go ahead based on the applicant’s reasons for the review.

Cllr Martin Smith, Licensing Committee chairman said: “Wayne Morriss and his team failed on all points argued before court on Tuesday and I am pleased that we have been successful in defending the first stage of the appeal process.

“The case will now proceed to a substantive hearing of the evidence in the autumn to determine whether the premises should be allowed to retain its premises licence.

“We remain confident that the decision previously reached by councillors last December was sound and was the correct decision in relation to public safety and prevention of crime and disorder, which were the relevant licensing objectives taken into account when the decision was made.”

The four day hearing to determine whether Karma should be allowed to retain its premises licence will start on Monday September 8.

Last December’s Licensing Sub Committee decision will be taken into account at the hearing but new evidence can also be introduced between now and September.

Karma re-opened on Friday last week following a major refurbishment.