Posted: Wed 2nd Mar 2016

Trader prosecuted for selling fakes /
This article is old - Published: Wednesday, Mar 2nd, 2016

A 62 year old Penpedairheol resident has pleaded guilty to 14 separate charges relating to the sale of counterfeit items and perfumes, following a Caerphilly Trading Standards investigation. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Victor Purnell of Bryn Siriol, Penpedairheol was taken to court after Trading Standards received information that a market trader known locally as ‘Mario’ was selling perfumes and fabric conditioner, which was believed to be counterfeit. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Consequently, Trading Standards purchased some perfume from ‘Mario’ – who turned out to be Victor Purnell. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

The perfume had been described as ‘Jean Paul Gaultier’ but was a ‘look-alike’ product that was also found not to comply with the labelling requirements of cosmetic safety regulations. During the sale, Purnell also offered the Trading Standards Officer some cheap hand rolling tobacco, which also turned out to be counterfeit. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Following this test purchase, Purnell’s home was searched – and in addition to the counterfeit tobacco products found (600 cigarettes and almost 4kg of hand rolling tobacco) and over 300 bottles of perfume that did not comply with the labelling requirements, a number of four and 1.1 litre bottles of fabric conditioner were found. These were labelled as being ‘Comfort’ and ‘Lenor’ brands but were found to be counterfeit, and the contents later found to be the same product as that found in 4 100-litre containers in Purnell’s shed. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Purnell appeared at Newport Magistrates Court on Friday 26th February 2016 and pleaded guilty to 14 charges in relation to the fraudulent use of trademarks for tobacco products and fabric conditioner, failure to comply with labelling requirements under safety regulations for tobacco products and perfumes, mis-describing perfumes and evasion of excise duty in relation to the tobacco products. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

The court, after receiving a pre-sentencing report from the Probation Service, imposed a curfew on Purnell, requiring him to stay inside his home from 7pm until 7am for six months. Additionally, he was ordered to pay the council £2,263.05 in costs and a victim surcharge of £60. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Cllr Nigel George, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Public Protection said, “This case, again demonstrates that there remains a small minority of irresponsible people operating in our society with no care for the safety of their customers; our residents. We often rely on members of the public to come forward to confidentially report issues such as this to our Trading Standards team, and I hope this latest successful prosecution will act as a reminder to any other traders selling counterfeit goods in our county borough that we will do everything in our power to protect the safety and rights of our residents”. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

To report an issue to Caerphilly County Borough Council’s Trading Standards team, please visit or call 01495 235 291. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

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