Gumtree tobacco sellers caught in Moray

The sellers were caught by Trading Standards and issued with fines. Picture: TSPL
The sellers were caught by Trading Standards and issued with fines. Picture: TSPL
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TWO people in Moray have been caught illegally selling cigarettes on listings website Gumtree.

Trading standards officials at Moray Council have issued the pair with £500 fixed penalty notices.

The sellers were using Gumtree, the popular online listings site, to advertise cigarettes for sale and trading standards officers made test purchases to identify the sellers.

Peter Adamson, Trading Standards Manager, said: “Illegal sales undermine Government efforts to reduce harm caused by smoking, and damage local businesses that play by the rules.

“Trading Standards will continue to enforce tobacco legislation, including sales through social media and online auctions.

“On this occasion, the cigarettes were genuine; however, illicit tobacco is often counterfeit and brings extra health risks from heavy metals and other contaminants.”

Since 2010, anyone selling tobacco products has to register with the Scottish Government.

Unregistered sellers are liable for fines of up to £20,000 if convicted.

Tobacco products brought in from abroad, including duty free products, cannot be sold legally.

Trading Standards can issue fixed penalty notices as an alternative to reporting alleged offences to the Procurator Fiscal.