A spitting Angus businessman is being hauled before local licensing chiefs after they were given details of “shocking” conduct against his ex-partner.
Paul James will now have to mount a fight to hang on to the personal licence he holds for Visocchi’s café in Kirriemuir after Angus licensing board chair Craig Fotheringham branded as “absolutely disgraceful” the circumstances surrounding an incident which led to Mr James being fined and ordered to pay his victim compensation.
In accordance with licensing legislation, the Angus board received notification of Mr James’ conviction at Forfar sheriff court following the September offence against the woman.
The businessman had grabbed his ex-partner by the face following a morning row before clearing his throat and spitting in her face.
She left the property, but later that day encountered Mr James again as she was driving in her car.
A Police Scotland representative confirmed to board members the narrative which was also given to the court hearing in November, which revealed Mr James then gestured to the woman to wind down her window before spitting on her a second time.
The court heard the offence was the first time Mr James had been in trouble, but his lawyer said that the café owner recognised his behaviour had been “reprehensible”.
Sentencing Sheriff Gregor Murray said it was “disgusting behaviour”.
James was ordered to pay £500 compensation to his victim and also fined £300.
Under Section 83 of the 2005 Licensing (Scotland) Act the board is automatically informed by the Chief Constable of any conviction against a licence holder.
At their meeting in Forfar, board members had to decide whether to hold a hearing, or take no further action.
Mr James was not present at the meeting in Forfar’s Town and County Hall on Thursday, but after hearing the narrative given by the Police Scotland representative, Monifieth and Sidlaws Conservative councillor Mr Fotheringham said: “I think that is a shocking sequence of events.
“It is totally unacceptable and absolutely disgraceful and I move that we hold a licence review at the next meeting.”
Mr James will now appear before the board next month.