03:50PM, Wednesday 11 August 2021
A business operating in Slough has been ordered to pay thousands of pounds after illegal and dangerous skin lightening products - which can turn skin blue - were found on sale.
The products were found by Slough Borough Council (SBC) trading standards officers after they were told about the illegal trading.
The business - operating as Beauty World - was trading out of a commercial unit at the Tesco Extra in Wellington Street.
SBC received a complaint about the products in July 2018, and trading standards conducted a search of the shop and discovered dozens of pots and tubes of creams.
The store was found to be in possession of skin lightening cosmetics and prescription only medicines for sale.
The products contained banned substances, including hydroquinone, which can be very dangerous for consumers and in some cases can turn skin blue.
Noorjahan Ltd, trading as Beauty World, and its directors Jameeluddin Mohammed, 36, and Minhajuddin Mohammed, 38, both of Leeds Road, Slough, appeared at Reading Magistrates’ Court on July 28 charged with a total of 18 offences.
The company and each director admitted two offences breaching the Cosmetics Products Enforcement Regulations 2013 and a further four each, breaching the Medicines Act 1968 and Human Medicines Regulations 2012.
Magistrates fined Noorjahan Ltd £11,200 and ordered it to pay costs totalling £7,890.
Each director was given a conditional discharge lasting three years (36 months).
Magistrates said at the sentencing: “We are told that the goods are dangerous in nature, and that they could cause real and significant damage to anyone who purchased and used them.
“The bench believes that as directors of the business, there is an absolute duty to ensure that you recruit qualified individuals and that you have an oversight regime that ensures that there is compliance with the law, and we believe you have failed in that act.
“A substance which is dangerous, which is not prescribed by a pharmacist, or sold by a pharmacist, has no right to be on the premises of a beauty product shop.
“You’ve either been negligent, or reckless, in your role as directors of the company, as you’ve quite clearly demonstrated that you did not have a grip on the functioning of your business.
"Let this be a lesson to you, that if you were to come back to this, or any court, that you would be subject to a custodial sentence should you come with similar circumstances to those for which you are before the court today.”
The directors admitted the charges based on the fact they did not know a member of staff, who is no longer employed, had been selling the products.
However, they accepted full responsibility as directors of the company.
Cllr Balvinder Bains, cabinet member for regulation and public protection at SBC, added: “Skin lightening products have no place being sold in the borough.
“They are banned for a reason. Such products contain harmful and harsh chemicals which can have serious medical consequences but also the possibility of turning skin blue.
“This high financial penalty the courts have imposed on this business and its directors should serve as a warning to other businesses that Trading Standards take such infringements extremely seriously.”
The products are set to be destroyed.
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