Polish Market in New Hall Lane caught selling cigarettes to children

Posted on - 31st May, 2023 - 8:00am | Author - | Posted in - Deepdale, Fishwick, Preston News
The bags were found to contain smuggled packets of cigarettes Pic: Trading Standards/Lancashire County Council

A supermarket in New Hall Lane has been fined after being caught selling ciagrettes to children and stocking counterfeit goods.

Polish Market, at 117-119 New Hall Lane, Fishwick, was targeted by trading standards officers in November last year.

The mini supermarket sold a packet of cigarettes to a 14-year-old without asking for proof of age to be produced.

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As well as selling cigarettes to children the products were also found to be counterfeit.

An inspection by Lancashire County Council’s trading standards found 786 packets of cigarettes and hand-rolling toabacco, including more than 100 contraband packs.

The rest of the packs were in smuggled, non-plain packaging, which have been outlawed for sale since 2017.

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Qassim Samen, 35, the owner and sole director of Polish Market Ltd, told officers that the sale ‘had been made by mistake after a Romanian man had left the packs at his shop.’

However, the court heard that, only a few months after the interview, an officer was able to buy another packet of smuggled cigarettes at the store.

After submitting a guilty plea on May 15, Mr Samen and his company were given fines and costs totalling £4,363 and magistrates also ordered the forfeiture and destruction of the 786 seized packs.

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County Councillor Michael Green, cabinet member for health and wellbeing at Lancashire County Council, said: “Trading Standards officers are declaring war against shops prepared to sell age-restricted products to children.

“When unscrupulous shopkeepers sell these illegal products, they can endanger the lives of our residents and they deprive our local communities of funding for public services.

“We find this totally unacceptable and would therefore encourage any residents who have concerns that a shop may be selling counterfeit goods or selling products to someone underage to report their suspicions.

“We will continue to prosecute traders in Lancashire who are selling smuggled and counterfeit products and any businesses who sell items to someone who is underage.”

Anyone with suspicions of illegal trading can contact Trading Standards via the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 08082231133.

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