Two shops have been fined hundreds of pounds after being caught selling illicit tobacco during a crackdown by Lancashire Trading Standards.
Idris Patel, 40, of Lex Street, Preston, must pay a £270 fine, £27 surcharge and £90 costs after being found guilty of two counts of supplying black market brands at Pound Plus on New Hall Lane, Preston, where he is a director.
Prosecuting, Nick McNamara said: “RHD is an illicit brand of cigarettes manufactured specifically for the black market. There are no controls over what goes into making RHD or on the levels of harmful substances they might contain.
“Like smuggled duty-free packs, RHD are not properly labelled with prescribed text and picture warnings against the dangers of smoking. These products are sold much cheaper than their genuine counterparts, which makes them easier for children and adults to afford, and threatens the livelihood of legitimate retailers who find it impossible to compete against cut-price tobacco.”
He was also convicted of supplying counterfeit tobacco products that did not comply with warning requirements. Pound Plus must pay a £375 fine, £37 surcharge and £90 costs over similar charges.
Rafiq Patel, 50, of Cromwell Road, Preston, must pay £335, £90 costs and a £33 surcharge after being found guilty of supplying illicit and counterfeit brands which did not comply with health warnings at Adam and Son Newagents on New Hall Lane.
Vipulkumar Patel, 28, of Friargate, Preston, was found guilty of aiding him and must pay a £90 fine, £20 surcharge and £90 costs.