Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco Serves Emergency Suspension Order to Miller's Ale House
December 11, 2008
FORT Myers—Today, the Department of Business and Professional Regulation’s Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco, in partnership with the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, served an Emergency Suspension Order to Miller’s Ale House Restaurant located at 10065 Gulf Center Dr. in Fort Myers.
ABT issued the order against Miller’s Ale House’s alcoholic beverage license due to an immediate danger to the health, safety and welfare of the general public. During a two-and-a-half-month investigation, agents witnessed restaurant employees selling illegal narcotics. The LCSO executed arrest warrants for the five employees charged with selling narcotics on the licensed premises. Another 13 individuals were identified during the course of the investigation and are also being sought in today’s arrest sweep by the LCSO. At this time, 12 suspects have been located and 10 are in custody.
“Establishments licensed to sell alcoholic beverages in Florida must comply with all state laws,” said Secretary Charles W. Drago. “DBPR is dedicated to maintaining the safety of our citizens and visitors in Florida’s licensed establishments. I thank the Lee County Sheriff’s Office for their partnership and assistance with this important enforcement action.”
According to Captain Ferrante, the Commander of the Special Investigations Division of the LCSO, members of the Narcotics Division took interest in the sale of various types of narcotics inside the restaurant. LCSO made special note of the overt nature of the sale of narcotics to undercover detectives in plain view of restaurant patrons, including young children and families.
Over the course of the last several months, undercover detectives integrated themselves into the restaurant and identified employees selling narcotics. After several drug transactions with undercover detectives, LCSO contacted ABT for assistance. Undercover detectives also identified the potential suppliers and associates of the employees who may have been involved with the sale of narcotics. In total, 18 people have been charged with various narcotics possession, trafficking and sales offenses.
The mission of ABT is to keep alcohol and tobacco out of the hands of underage persons, to ensure that licensed establishments are in compliance with the laws and rules regulating the industry in Florida, and to collect taxes and fees related to these industries.
The Department of Business and Professional Regulation’s mission is to license efficiently and regulate fairly. The Department licenses more than one million businesses and professionals ranging from real estate agents, veterinarians, and accountants to contractors and cosmetologists. For more information, please visit www.MyFloridaLicense.com
# # #