Suspended jail sentence for supermarket boss who sold illegal tobacco

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PJ Supermarket

The owner of a Bedford supermarket has been handed a 26-week suspended prison sentence, ordered to pay more than £12,000 in costs and penalties, after “repeatedly” ignoring warnings from Bedford Borough Council.

Parim Jit, who owns PJ Supermarket, in Aspley Road, Bedford, was sentenced at Luton Magistrates Court on Tuesday 28 May in relation to 11 offences regarding the sale of illegal tobacco.

He was found guilty of five breaches of the labelling requirements of Part 2 of the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations 2016, and six breaches of the Trade Marks Act 1994.

As well as the suspended jail term, the court ordered him to pay £12,474.30 - made up of £12,320.30 towards the prosecution’s costs plus a victim surcharge of £154.

A spokesperson for Bedford Borough Council said; “The court heard how there were a large number of offences, which took place on a number of occasions. They were deliberate acts and Mr Jit repeatedly failed to respond to warnings. He knew that he was breaking the law. 

“Any businesses selling illegal tobacco should know that the Trading Standards Service will use all the enforcement tools at our disposal, including prosecution and closure orders, to ensure these activities do not continue.

“If you believe a business is selling illegal tobacco it can be reported to Trading Standard via the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133 or www.citizensadvice.org.uk/consumer/get-more-help/report-to-trading-standards/.”

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