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Clampdown continues on sale of underage and illegal vapes on Anglesey

An application submitted by Anglesey council’s Trading Standards Team has seen a convenience store temporarily close in a bid to tackle illegal and underage vaping.

On Wednesday 14 February, Top G Convenience Store in Holyhead was ordered by Caernarfon Magistrates Court to close for a period of 3 months.

The Court heard how Anglesey’s Trading Standards Team had seized 975 illegal disposable vapes from the premises between April and December 2023.

All the vapes were above the legal maximum 2ml (approximate 600 puffs) capacity and failed to meet requirements regarding important health warnings.

The Authority received a number of complaints from the public, businesses, Ysgol Uwchradd Caergybi and North Wales Police in relation to the convenience store.

In August 2023, an operation carried out by Anglesey Trading Standards Officers, saw the Director of the convenience store, Mr Rabar Saber, sell vapes to two 15-year-old volunteers after no age-related checks were carried out.

The court also heard how PC Lisa Thomas witnessed another 15-year-old child purchasing a vape from the premises in November 2023.

On issuing the maximum 3 month closure order, Caernarfon Magistrates confirmed the necessity of the closure, citing continuous criminality over the last 8 months despite repeated advice and warnings.

Mr Saber was also ordered to pay costs of over £10,000 to cover disposal costs for the seized illegal disposable vapes.

Public Protection Portfolio Holder, Councillor Nicola Roberts, said, “Our Trading Standards Team continue to work tirelessly with partner agencies to help take illegal and harmful products off the streets. Protecting people from potentially harmful products is of utmost importance as we seek to safeguard the well-being of the public”.

She added, “This convenience store displayed a consistent and blatant disregard to vaping laws. Laws that are in place to protect members of the public.”

Residents and businesses alike are urged to report any concerns regarding underage sales, proxy sales or non-compliant vape products on Anglesey to [email protected]