Japan Tobacco International working in partnership with TM EYE has secured another conviction against a seller of illegal tobacco.

At Camberwell Magistrates’ Court on 6 September, Wen Xin Han pleaded guilty to selling tobacco products that broke UK labelling and packaging laws. Han received a custodial sentence of 1 year and 20 weeks, suspended for 12 months.

Evidence of the offences was obtained via a series of undercover mystery shopping operations conducted at Bovingdon market, Hemel Hempstead, between September 2017 and May 2018. Eight illegal products (one pack of cigarettes and seven 50g packs of roll your own tobacco) were purchased during the investigation.

In addition, Police officers from Hertfordshire Constabulary seized a large quantity of cigarettes and hand-rolling tobacco from Han’s possession in April 2018.

Charlie Cunningham-Reid, UK head of corporate affairs, said: “We welcome the decision made by the Court. Imposing a custodial sentence reflects the seriousness of the crime – selling illegal tobacco damages legitimate business and makes it easier for young people to get hold of tobacco products.

“This is the third successful private prosecution supported by JTI against a criminal selling illegal tobacco, which demonstrates the company’s commitment to help tackle the problem of illegal tobacco and we will not hesitate to take similar action in future.”