Newsagent Fined For Selling Cigarettes To Kids - Again

Garratt Lane Newsagents fined for second offence in a year

A Wandsworth newsagent has been fined by magistrates after being caught selling cigarettes to children for the second time in a year.

Staff at Garratt Lane Newsagents Ltd sold cigarettes to a 14-year-old boy despite being caught committing the same offence in March 2012. On that occasion they had allowed a 16-year-old girl to buy cigarettes in their shop.

It has been illegal to sell cigarettes to young people under the age of 18 since October 2007.

After that first breach of the law the shop’s owner Farida Rajwani was given a formal warning and offered advice on how to comply with the law. Trading standards officers also offered to give Mrs Rajwani and her staff training so that they wouldn’t make the same mistake again. She declined this offer.

As a result, trading standards officers returned to the shop with a specially trained 14-year-old to make sure it was sticking to the rules.

Unfortunately the child was able to purchase cigarettes without being challenged in any way. He was not asked for his age or for any form of ID despite the fact that he had been chosen to carry out the test purchase because he didn’t look anywhere near as old as 18.

As a result, Mrs Rajwani’s company was fined £1,000 and ordered to pay the council’s legal costs of £1,110 plus a £100 victim surcharge after pleading guilty to one offence of selling to a minor.

As well as tobacco it is illegal for a shop to sell alcohol, fireworks, knives and solvents to anyone under the age of 18. Anyone buying an aerosol paint spray must be at least 16-years-old.

Anyone with information or concerns about items being unlawfully sold to children should call trading standards on (020) 8871 7720 or email

October 24, 2013