A SHOPKEEPER has been fined after being caught with hundreds of pounds of counterfeit cigarettes and tobacco.
Hussain Asem, who runs Halan Grocers, Bellhouse Road, Shiregreen, pleaded guilty to charges of possession for sale of illicit cigarettes and tobacco products without proper health warnings and also offering for sale ‘black snuff’ oral tobacco which cannot be legally sold in the UK.
Sheffield Magistrates’ Court heard officers from Sheffield Council’s trading standards department confiscated the cigarettes and oral tobacco in a raid to clamp down on the availability of cheap and illicit tobacco in local communities.
The court was told officers visited the store following an anonymous tip-off. When they inspected the shop they found 96 packs of illicit cigarettes and six kilos of hookah pipe tobacco hidden beneath the counter, as well as 37 packs of oral tobacco.
All the products were confiscated and a prosecution launched.
Asem was fined £2,000 and ordered to pay £377 towards the council’s costs.
n Anyone with information about illegal sales of tobacco and alcohol can call the Consumer Direct helpline in confidence on 08454 040506.