For many years police have used what are known as booze stings. It's where they send an under-age teen to buy alcohol and when the licensed premises sell the teen the booze, the police then pounce and charge the premises with selling alcohol to under-18s.
Sounds a bit like entrapment if you ask me, but I'll come to that in a minute.
Anyway, the booze stings have taken a bit of a hit recently due to shortage of teenagers willing to take on the job, the result being that police have now all but shelved the idea and have instead "pledged to take a more 'honest' approach with the licensed trade..."
Yes, I had to read that phrase twice myself as I couldn't believe police actually said it either:
"pledged to take a more 'honest' approach with licensed trade..."
Here we have Police Scotland admitting that they have been acting dishonestly for years by coercing licensed premises to break the law.
Now I'm a non drinker so I really have no stake in how licensed premises behave themselves.
But I do care about under-age alcohol consumption and I do agree that licensed premises selling alcohol to under-age kids should have the book thrown at them.
But it must be done honestly and within the law or else the police end up being just as bad as the criminals they're supposed to be arresting.
It's now clear that Police Scotland's tactics regarding the licensed trade were never designed to catch them selling alcohol to under-age drinkers but rather was all about inducing licensed premises to break the law in order so the police could get more arrests and hit targets.
It might be welcome news to hear that police have about-turned and have now come out and pledged to be more 'honest' in future.
It's just a shame that Police Scotland ever thought that it was ok to act in the dishonest way they did in the first place.