On the 4th August 2021, Mr Mariwan Tofiq Mustafa failed to appear at the Bradford Council Licensing Sub Committee to hear an application for the review of the licence to sell alcohol at his business Piotr I Pawel, 23 Duckworth Lane, Bradford, BD9 5ES. The alcohol licence was revoked in his absence.
The premises was well known to West Yorkshire Trading Standards Service (WYTSS) with the Service having received complaints about the premises supplying illicit and duty free tobacco. On Tuesday 12th January 2021 at Bradford Magistrates’ Court, Mr Mustafa pleaded guilty to supplying illicit single cigarettes to a trading standards child test purchaser who was aged 15 at the time. He was fined a total of £233 and ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £32 plus £927 in costs.
Warnings to stop the illegal activity were ignored as the service continued to receive complaints about the premises. The review application was submitted by WYTSS after multi agency operations. Trading standards officers carried out test purchases at the store, this was then followed up with inspection visits where illicit tobacco was seized.
The seized illicit tobacco products were counterfeit, did not bear the statutory health warnings, were not in the standardised packaging and were non duty paid. The total amount seized was almost 5000 cigarettes.
The Tackling Illicit Tobacco for Better Health Programme, funded by the five Public Health departments, is helping people to stop tobacco use for good by educating the public and by investigating traders who supply cheap and illicit tobacco. The initiative uses multi-agency enforcement and community marketing campaigns to tackle the problems of the illicit trade.
To date the programme has taken more than 7 million illicit cigarettes and two and half tonnes of illicit hand rolling tobacco off the streets of West Yorkshire. With more inspections planned in the coming weeks, these figures are set to increase. Training sessions with thousands of members of the public and hundreds of front line professionals have been delivered to raise awareness about the dangers and wider criminality associated with the supply of illicit tobacco.
Linda Davis, West Yorkshire Trading Standards Manager said, “All tobacco – both legal and illegal – kills half of all long term smokers. Children and young smokers are often targeted by people who sell illegal cigarettes, making it even easier for them to get hooked on smoking. The people making money out of this do not care who they sell to. Members of the public should recognise the adverse health, economic and social impacts of the illicit trade of tobacco products, including the linkages with human trafficking and organised drug crimes. It is great the committee have revoked the alcohol licence.”
If you need to report a trader selling cheap and illicit tobacco please contact the Illegal Tobacco Hotline on 0300 999 0000 or report it at https://keep-it-out.co.uk/ anonymously.
More information about the campaign can be found on the website and anyone wanting help to quit can find their local Stop Smoking Service at