Police in Rhondda Cynon Taff are warning under-age teenagers not to use fake identification to get into bars and clubs.
Officers are concerned about the growing numbers of young people presenting official documents belonging to older friends and relatives in a bid to show they are 18 and old enough to be served. In one night recently a nightclub seized two passports and two driving licences from girls thought to be under the age of 18.
These cases are now being investigated by the licensing department of South Wales Police who will be contacting the rightful owners and attempting to trace those who fraudulently used them. South Wales Police Northern Division said: “It is not new for young people to misuse identification such as driving licences and passports, which often belong to older siblings or friends but perhaps they don’t realise that this is a very serious offence and could lead to them having a criminal record.
“We are working very closely with pubs and clubs across Rhondda Cynon Taff to actively encourage them to challenge anyone who appears under the age of 21 in order to protect the individuals themselves and also reduce alcohol-related crime and disorder. Our message to anyone thinking of using someone else identification is simple it is not worth getting a criminal record just to have a drink. Anyone convicted of using identification fraudulently can be sentenced to up to 10 years in prison.”
Rhondda Cynon Taff Community Safety Partnership, said:
“We fully support the efforts being undertaken by our local pubs, clubs, council and police licensing teams in tackling underage drinking. Before lending identification such as passports and licenses to friends and family, people need to consider the serious implications this could lead to.”
“The Community Safety Partnership and agency licensing teams will continue to work with local establishments in the positive efforts they are making to deter alcohol-related crime and disorder and underage drinking’.