A BURTON store where thousands of illegal cigarettes have been seized in a series of raids over the last two years could now be about to lose its licence.
Police and trading standards bosses are seeking to take action against the Global Shop, in Waterloo Street, which has routinely been subject to visits from the authorities since suspicions were first raised in 2012.
The store is the latest in Burton to face action as licensing bosses continue their war on illicit cigarettes and tobacco, which could potentially pose a hazard to the public.
It first came under the glare of trading standards in March 2012 when some 3,280 cigarettes and 1.55 kilogrammes of tobacco were seized from where they were being stashed behind the counter.
It has remained firmly on their radar ever since and in April this year, nearly 10,000 cigarettes were found concealed in metal shelving in a store room.
Licence holder Soltan Marad Salimi is now due to appear at an East Staffordshire Borough Council hearing next week, where the future of the store will be decided, with police chiefs in Burton calling for its licence to be removed completely.
An application from Staffordshire County Council’s trading standards team to East Staffordshire Borough Council said: “It is felt that Mr Soltan Marad Salimi has erred in his capacity as a premise licence holder and has not exercised all due diligence in selling the illicit tobacco.
“It is trading standards’ opinion that the premise licence holder could not have reasonably expected this product to be legal for sale in the UK, due to the foreign wording on the packaging and lack of UK duty paid markings and UK health warnings and is why the tobacco was not found stored in the tobacco gantry on display behind the counter, but hidden in the metal shelving located in the store room.”