PATERSON, NJ- A bar and liquor store at the center of a recent effort to enact a business curfew in the city’s 2nd Ward has been ordered closed for 200 days following the Paterson Alcohol Beverage Control Board’s findings on 17 counts including selling packaged goods after hours, selling packaged goods to minors, and, according to 5th Ward Councilman Luis Velez, being a “safe haven” for other illegal activities.

Three non-violent shooting have taken place in the intersection where the Mo’s Low Cost Liquors is located in 2018, causing local officials to take strong action to bring safety back to the neighborhood in the past weeks.

According to one Paterson detective who spoke at the hearing there have been “many complaints” made regarding how the store’s business operations were negatively impacting the quality of life which included individuals loitering in the area, “smoking marijuana and being loud.”

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While business owner, Diogenesis Moya, who spoke through a translator, said that “all of us know it is not the best area of Paterson,” he maintained that he was not responsible for the misdeeds of others and “not able to check on the packages of every person.”

Speaking to TAPinto Paterson following the meeting Velez said that Moya’s answer was unacceptable and that he now has seven months, the length of the closure, to “reflect” and figure out ways to be a better neighbor. Velez went on to minimize any concern that the suspension was too harsh and therefore likely to be reduced by higher powers saying that “the state is fully aware that strong action needed to be taken to keep that community safe.”