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New audit: Gifts come under fire at alcohol control division

New audit: Gifts come under fire at alcohol control division



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SALT LAKE CITY — A legislative audit released Tuesday morning details gifts to the former Utah Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control licensing and compliance director and states he should be criminally investigated for his actions.

Earl Dorius, an attorney, is accused of accepting free meals and gift cards from an "old friend" who owns eight establishments that hold liquor licenses, according to the legislative auditor general's report, presented to lawmakers Tuesday.

"Even though these gifts were described as gifts from a friend, they still violated state laws," the audit said.


"Even though these gifts were described as gifts from a friend, they still violated state laws," the audit said.

Auditors referred the matter to the Utah Attorney General's Office.

In addition to employee improprieties, legislative auditors said they found problems with DABC operations, including inventory discrepancies, poor oversight of warehouse maintenance contracts and lax warehouse security.

In a written response to the audit, interim DABC director Salvador Petilos said that since the agency reached an "inexcusable and scandalous low point" last summer, it has been moving at a "sprint pace" to change its culture, specifically policies, personnel and internal enforcement.

"Much has been accomplished, but there is still more to do," Petilos wrote.

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