Decker's Licensees Done in Harford County
One of Bel Air's downtown liquor stores may not open again for months.
Decker's Fine Wine & Spirits will be closed for the rest of the year. The Harford County Liquor Control Board denied the business a liquor license and banned licensees Joseph Borromeo and Virgil Dale Davis from serving again in Harford County at a hearing Wednesday.
"Neither licensee can hold any other license in the future," board administrator Kathryn Thess said in an email.
The licensees were found guilty of three charges in a May 18 hearing: failing to keep complete and accurate records of alcoholic purchases, buying alcoholic beverages from someone other than a wholesaler and making any material false statement for application of a license.
General Manager Mike Serrini was fired as part of the liquor board's investigation, Inspector Danielle Markette said at the May 18 hearing.
Borromeo and Davis were issued a 30-day license suspension for the former two charges, effective June 1. For the false statement charge, they were issued a six-month revocation of the alcoholic beverage license, effective July 1.
No other licenses can be issued to the Decker's property for six months from the revocation of the license.
Thess said the liquor board will not accept applications for alcoholic beverage licenses until the revocation ends Jan. 1. Most applications take five to seven weeks to process, she added.
Borromeo, a 75 percent owner, and Davis, a 25 percent owner, will not be allowed to sell the remaining alcohol at Decker’s to consumers.
“The alcohol can be taken back by the distributors, but that will be under the supervision of the liquor control board,” Thess said in a telephone interview.
The pair of licensees could apply at the state comptroller's office for a bulk transfer license, which costs about $200, and would enable them to sell their remaining alcohol to another distributor in Harford County. They were found guilty of three other violations in the last five years, which factored into the board's decision Thursday. The past penalties were for serving alcohol to a minor on Feb. 3 and 17 2006 and March 10, 2010 and carried a total of $4,000 in fines and a three-day suspension.
Decker's was also investigated by the FBI and IRS on Nov. 15 for its connections to Amrik Singh Melhi, 51, of Clarksville, and his wife, Ravinder Kaur Melhi, 49, as first reported by Patch.
"Amrik Singh Melhi and others would pay police officers in exchange for them using their official authority to ensure the safe transport and distribution of untaxed cigarettes and alcohol in Maryland and Virginia," said an FBI statement released in November.
Decker's was closed the day of the investigation, but reopened the next day. Charges against the Melhis, who were identified as part owners at the time, are still pending.