A shop has been fined after a packet of cigarettes was sold to a 13-year-old boy following an operation by the Tower Hamlets Council trading standards team.
All three defendants from All in One Bazar on Roman Road pleaded guilty to the charges at Thames Magistrates Court in Bow on August 1.
John Biggs, Mayor of Tower Hamlets said: “Selling these products to people under the age of 18 is a serious offence. We hope this latest successful operation by our officers will act as a deterrent to those who feel they can operate above the law.”
On 20 December 2018, trading standards officers carried out a tobacco test purchase operation at various stores around the borough.
All in One Bazar was visited and a 13-year-old volunteer was sold a packet of 20 Mayfair Green cigarettes by Hasanur Rahman.
Mr Rahman – who did not ask the teenager his age at any point during the transaction – claimed that he did not work for the shop, but was just helping out.
All in One Bazar Ltd, represented by Muhammed Dilwar Hussain, was fined £210 with costs of £500 and a £30 victim surcharge and a collection order.
Mr Hussain, 27, of Palmers Road in Bethnal Green, who was present on the day of the sale, was fined £133 with costs of £200 and a £30 victim surcharge and a collection order.
Mr Rahman, 26, of Digby Street in Globe Town, was fined £50 with costs of £100 and a £30 victim surcharge and a collection order.
There was also no statutory tobacco notice displayed on the premises which should read: “It is illegal to sell tobacco products to anyone under the age of 18”.
Councillor David Edgar, Cabinet Member for Environment said: “The vast majority of shop owners in the borough are responsible about checking the age of customers buying cigarettes. However our trading standards teams do carry out test purchases and where they find retailers are not abiding by the law we will prosecute.
“This important work ensures that our younger residents are protected from exposure to tobacco from an early age which can potentially lead to a lifelong addiction.”
In mitigation, Mr Hussain said a mistake had been made and apologised.
Mr Rahman accepted that he had wrongly told officers he had sought ID from the test purchaser, when in fact he had not. He added that he was not currently working for the shop.