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Pub fined $60,000 after drunken death

A MAN was found dead in his home after a night at Meandarra's Royal Hotel, Dalby Magistrates Court has heard.

David Riley attended the hotel on the night of August 23 and consumed liquor in the bar until about 9pm.

He was continually served liquor despite showing signs of excessive intoxication.

Friends found him dead the next morning.

A report showed Mr Riley had died of alcohol poisoning with a blood-alcohol level of 0.398.

Former licensee Evanross Pty Ltd pleaded guilty to five Liquor Act offences at Dalby Magistrates Court yesterday, including supplying an unduly intoxicated person and failing to provide a safe environment.

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The manager at the time, Eric Martin Rossmuller, pleaded guilty to permitting liquor to be supplied to an unduly intoxicated person.

The bartender serving Mr Riley, Selinaa Kate Howard, also pleaded guilty to supplying him alcohol.

Defence barrister Andrew Herbert said Rossmuller had regularly refused Mr Riley service, and was not seeking to take advantage of him on the night.

Mr Herbert said the contribution Mr Riley's alcohol consumption at the Royal Hotel had towards his death was unknown.

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Magistrate Kay Ryan said the fact Mr Riley could have gone to another venue to drink did not lessen the licensee's responsibility.

Mrs Ryan said the purpose of the Liquor Act was to minimise harm, and Mr Riley's alcohol consumption at the hotel would have contributed to his death.

Evanross Pty Ltd was fined $60,000.

Howard and Rossmuller were fined $1000 and $5000 respectively, with no conviction recorded for either.

Topics:  alcohol, drinking, editors picks, meandarra


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