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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

City centre store fined £530 for illegal vape sale

A 13-year-old was sold an illegal vape by a worker in a Bradford city centre store – a court has heard.

The teenage test purchaser was working for Trading Standards when they were sold the vape at Moes Newsagent on Bridge Street.

The incident led to the business and the man who sold the vape being prosecuted by Trading Standards. The case was heard at Bradford and Keighley Magistrates on Thursday, when the business was ordered to pay almost £2,000.

The test purchase took place on17  August last year, when the 13-year-old asked for a Crystal Promax 4000 red apple ice disposable electronic cigarette.

The product had 10ml of liquid in its tank – in the UK it is illegal to sell a vape containing more than 2ml.

The teen was not asked for ID and was sold the product without question.

The sale led to both the company and the man working behind the till, Mohammed Naweed, being charged with selling a nicotine product to someone under the age of 18.

The business was also charged with supplying an electronic cigarette which did not comply with product requirements.

Both Naweed, 39 of Undercliffe Lane, and Arif Ayyub, the business’ owner, pleaded guilty to all charges.

Waseem Raja, prosecuting on behalf of Trading Standards, said: “During the purchase no ID was requested and there were no questions as to how old the test purchaser was.”

During an interview, Naweed said he had recognised the test purchaser as a regular customer, and this was the reason he didn’t ask their age.

Naweed was suspended for one month once Ayyub found out about the sale, but has since returned to work at the store.

Said the business and Naweed had since shown remorse, and agreed to take action to prevent such a sale from happening again.

Ayyub told the court he had not been aware that the product with the 10ml tank was illegal for sale in the UK. He said: “The reason I didn’t think it was illegal was that I had seen them on sale in big names stores like BP and Shell.

“I didn’t do my homework, I thought because other shops were selling them we could sell them.

“We have been there for 26 years, this is the first time we’ve found ourselves in a situation like this. We’ve passed test purchases plenty of times.”

Naweed told the court it had been particularly hot that day, and the heat had clouded his judgement. But he added: “It was my fault, no doubt about it. There are no excuses.”

Magistrates fined the store £530 and ordered the business to pay £1,250 costs and a £212 surcharge.

Naweed was fined £251 and ordered to pay £250 costs and a £100 surcharge.

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