Hooligans Ales and Eats has been forced to operate without being able to put any actual suds on the tables because the owner is allegedly associated with a former gang member.
Hooligans is a restaurant in downtown Kelowna that has not been able to serve alcohol since opening in Nov. 2021 after being denied a primary food and liquor license in Dec. 2021.
Paula Nowakowski, the owner and operator of the establishment, has filed a petition with the Supreme Court of B.C., requesting a judicial review of the “unfair” denial of the license.
The General Manager of the Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch (LCRB) has been named in the court document as the respondent.
After an investigation following the license application, the LCRB concluded that Paula Nowakowski’s former common-law partner, Mark Nowakowski, a convicted criminal for his involvement in the Hells Angels “puppet club,” as the President of the Fallen Saints Motorcycle Club, is involved in the business.
Paula claims that the two are separated. She does not have a separation agreement as they had not entered into one but could provide proof that both she and Mark had filed their taxes as separated. She alleges that Mark is not involved in the business.
However, Mark is on the sublease as one of the parties that agreed to indemnify the landlord in the event of a default.
Additionally, on Jan 28, 2021, Mark told a Kelowna RCMP constable that he was going to open a wings-style restaurant called Hooligans” with his “wife.”
Also, court documents state that an email relating to the liquor license was sent to the City of Kelowna from the email address email@example.com, which was used as evidence for Mark Nowakowski’s involvement in the business.
The landlord for the building where Hooligans resides said that Mark lives in Saskatchewan and is separated from Paula. The lawyer also claimed that Mark Nowakowski is reformed and has not been involved in any criminal activity for the past “four of five years,” and that the Fallen Saints Motorcycle Club no longer exists.
The LCRB said that its investigation had raised concerns that the applicant was attempting to mislead or hide information from them.
The petition claims that it was unfair for the respondent to refuse the application without disclosing and giving Paula Nowakowski a reasonable opportunity to respond to the additional information gathered by LCRB investigators.
The petition is asking for the liquor license application to be reconsidered and for more time for a judicial review of the decision.
None of the allegations have been proven in court and the LCRB has yet to respond to the petition.