A man has been fined for selling fake cigarettes outside an Aberdeen pub.
Stuart Clark was found with packets and pouches of counterfeit Mayfair, Amber Leaf and Lambert and Butler products outside the Kirkgate Bar on March 23 last year.
The 46-year-old was being watched on CCTV as he made his illicit sales, and the police were soon alerted by the camera operator who suspected he was dealing drugs.
Today he appeared at Aberdeen Sheriff Court and admitted selling products which “bore a sign identical or to be likely mistaken for” a registered trademark.
When he was detained by police, he was carrying packets of fake Lambert and Butler and Mayfair King Size cigarettes, and 14 pouches of Amber Leaf Hand Rolling Tobacco.
Clark was also carrying £561 in cash.
Fiscal depute John Richardson said: “The accused indicated that he had obtained the tobacco and cigarettes from a third-party in Northfield, and was selling the cigarettes at £4 for a pack of 20 and the tobacco at £5.50 a pouch.”
He added that the prices were a “significant discount on the normal retail price”.
Solicitor Stuart Beveridge said that Clark had turned to crime as his benefits had been cut by £340 a month.
He added: “He has not been in any trouble since this matter and he pleaded guilty at the earliest opportunity.”
Clark, of Lewis Road, Aberdeen, was fined £100 by Sheriff Charlotte Coutts.
Last night, Aberdeen Trading Standards manager Graeme Paton said: “This is the second time Mr Clark has pleaded guilty to possessing counterfeit tobacco for the purposes of supply.
“In July 2015 he was fined £720 following a trading standards investigation.
“If any member of the public wants to give us information on the sale of counterfeit tobacco products then they can do so in confidence using the Trading Standards hotline on 01224 522433.
“We will investigate any allegations we receive.”