Man prosecuted for storing illegal tobacco in a car

A man was today found guilty of possessing illegal tobacco products by storing them in a car to evade detection by Trading Standards Officers.

Osman Abdullah Hamarashid, 33, of Westbourne Road, Birmingham, received 120 hours of unpaid work and ordered to pay £200 costs and £85 victim surcharge at a trial at Nottingham Magistrates Court today (November 16), following an investigation by Nottingham Trading Standards Service last December.

Through support from CCTV and Nottinghamshire Police, Hamarashid was arrested whilst sitting in a car surrounded by illegal tobacco products. At interview he stated that he had been paid £50 a day to mind the tobacco that was to be sold in the Radford Road area of the city.

The products were a mixture of counterfeit items, foreign labelled and non-duty paid. The retail value of the products was over £10,000, with a street value of £4,755.

Although Hamarashid entered a guilty plea to offences under the Trade Marks Act 1994, he was also found guilty of offences under the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations 2016.

Portfolio Holder for Community and Customer Services, Councillor Toby Neal, said: “This is an excellent result. Nottingham City Council Trading Standards Service takes offences like this very seriously and this case shows the lengths people dealing in illegal tobacco are going to in order to evade detection, but there’s no hiding place for them in Nottingham. We will continue with our efforts to bring those dealing in illegal tobacco to justice.”

If you have information in relation to counterfeit products you can report them anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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