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TUPELO, Miss. -- The Mississippi Alcohol Beverage Control will offer convenience store and petroleum retailers training sessions designed to bring businesses up to speed on spotting fake identification cards that are used for liquor and beer purchases.
Pat Daily, agent in charge of ABC's District 2, said in addition to the training for permitted businesses serving alcohol, the agency has implemented a Cops in Shops program in which agents will pose as business employees checking identification.
The program, a cooperative effort between alcohol retailers and law enforcement, is aimed at identifying and arresting minors attempting to purchase alcohol and adults who supply alcohol to minors.
Officials said the new sessions come at a time when computer scanners and identification offered through the Internet are making the task of detecting fake IDs more difficult. Daily said the bureau hopes the arrest of minors who are drinking or using fake identification will cause word to spread about the intensified focus on underage consumption of alcohol.
Individuals who are underage and use fake identification or lie about their true age to obtain alcohol can face a fine of up to $500 and up to 30 days of community service. In addition, underage drinkers can face additional fines for possessing alcohol and could have their drivers licenses suspended, Daily said.