£42,000 worth of dodgy cigarettes and illegal vapes seized at Smethwick shop

More than 3,000 packets of illicit tobacco worth £40,000 and 228 illegal vapes on sale for £2,000 were confiscated when Sandwell Council and HMRC swooped on a Smethwick shop.

Vapes have been confiscated in Sandwell
Vapes have been confiscated in Sandwell

Vaping devices are highly regulated by the Government to control the amount of nicotine available and have to be approved by the Medicines and Healthcare Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

The legal capacity of a disposable e-cigarette tank is 2ml or approximately 650 puffs. Many of those seized on the were more than double this, ranging from 4.5ml up to 9ml.

A Sandwell Coucnil spokesman said: "As a general guide, if a disposable device offers more than approximately 650 puffs it will be illegal to offer for sale. Many of the offending items found offered up to as many as 3,500 puffs.

"Products should also have the name and address of a UK contact if the producer is based outside of the UK. Many of the seized products were missing this information, along with essential instructions for use, and health and safety warnings."

The spokesman added: "Anyone spotting illegal vapes for sale, or who believes a shop may be selling vaping products to under 18s, should report details to Sandwell’s Trading Standards team at trading_standards@sandwell.gov.uk."

Sandwell Council has yet to reveal the name of the shop as it is awaiting the result of the prosecution.

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