The British Beer & Pub Association has slammed the Home Office’s use of a sting operation to make claims about alcohol sales to minors. Today’s newspapers report that 51% of pubs targeted during a summer crackdown on under-age drinking in England and Wales sold alcohol to minors. But the trade group called the results a “gross distortion”. It said such a sample was like “doing raids on suspected drug dealers” and using the results to make assumptions about drug use in the UK. David Blunkett, home secretary, will contact pub chains found wanting, telling them to bring their outlets under control and he will ask courts to impose tougher sentences.