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Newsagent becomes first in Scotland to be banned from selling tobacco products

A newsagent has become the first in Scotland to be banned from selling tobacco products, trading standards officers say.

Aberdeen City Council took action against Shriraj Gindha, trading as Tony's Newsagent in the city's Victoria Road, after under-age customers were repeatedly sold tobacco products.

A 12-month tobacco retail banning order was granted at the city's Sheriff Court yesterday.

The city council said it was the first such order to be served against a registered tobacco retailer in Scotland.

An investigation by the council's trading standards officers found the shop sold cigarettes to 16-year-old test purchasing volunteers on three separate occasions between October 2011 and August 2013.

The shop owner had previously been given a warning after another illegal sale in August 2011.

Graeme Paton, trading standards team leader, said: "Despite numerous advisory visits, repeated warnings and fixed penalty notices, Mr Gindha continued to sell cigarettes to our 16-year-old test purchasing volunteers, never asking for proof of age or their date of birth.

"In light of repeated offending, we had little option but to seek an order from the court banning him from selling tobacco products.

"This was an extreme case and the majority of tobacco retailers in the city comply with the law. Those who do fail a test purchase visit rarely do so a second time."

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