Published: Monday, 5th November 2018
A mini mart has been shut down after thousands of illegal cigarettes and tobacco were found hidden underneath kitchen units and behind furniture.
Following complaints from local residents and businesses, Medway Council Trading Standards Officers, accompanied by specialist tobacco sniffer dogs, visited Medway Mini Mart at 102 Canterbury Street, Gillingham, on six separate occasions since August 2017 and uncovered five thousand illegal cigarettes and 3kg of tobacco.
Counterfeit and non-duty paid tobacco was found hidden in kitchen cupboard panels and behind furniture.
The lease for the shop has now been terminated under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002, with the cooperation of the landlords.
This brings the total number of illegal tobacco shop closed by Trading Standards in Medway over the last three years to five.
'Thank you to residents for reporting this shop to us'
Cllr Jane Chitty, Medway Council’s Portfolio Holder responsible for Trading Standards, said: “Firstly I would like to thank the residents and businesses who reported this shop to us. The people running this business repeatedly demonstrated that they had no intention of complying with the law. We are committed to closing down retail units which continuously flout the law and sell illegal tobacco products.”