Sheffield shisha lounge owner fined for allowing smoking on premises

Breeze Shisha Lounge.
Breeze Shisha Lounge.
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A shisha lounge has been fined thousands of pounds for allowing smoking illegally on his premises.

Saqib Altaf Hussain, owner of Breeze Shisha Lounge in John Street, Sheffield, was ordered to pay £1, 535 - made up of a £250 fine, a £35 victim surcharge and £1, 150 costs - for allowing people to smoke shisha pipes indoors in November last year.

People smoking inside Breeze Shisha Lounge.

People smoking inside Breeze Shisha Lounge.

This is the second time the 44-year-old has been before the courts, after being prosecuted for the same offence in July 2015.

Shisha pipes use tobacco sweetened with fruit or sugar to give a more aromatic taste. A Sheffield Council spokeswoman said because premises of this kind often do not sell alcohol they simply operate with a licence as a normal cafe selling tea and coffee.

She added that to prosecute, the authorities have to catch people in the act of smoking inside the premises and the authority doesn't always have the resources available to constantly monitor the situation.

Hussain pleaded guilty to failing to prevent smoking in a smoke-free place, contrary to section 8 of the Health Act 2006, and was sentenced at Sheffield Magistrates Court on Tuesday, July 4.

After the hearing, councillor Bryan Lodge, cabinet member for environment and streetscene at the council, said: “It’s disappointing that the defendant has continued to overlook the advice of our officers and allowed smoking of shisha pipes at his premises.

“As a result, he was rightly back before the courts this week. Venues must be smoke-free, and that includes shisha lounges.

“The law is clear on this and if a business is operating as a shisha café, the premises must meet the necessary requirements..”

This latest prosecution follows a number of similar successful cases brought before the courts by the council's health and safety enforcement team.

Last month, Hassan Butt, aged 21, pleaded guilty to allowing customers to smoke shisha pipes at the Mint Paris Lounge on London Road and was fined nearly £3000. This came just several months after he was fined more than £2000 for the same offence.