Solihull Council has successfully prosecuted a shop owner for the sale of an age-restricted product to a minor.
In a test purchase operation conducted by the Council’s Trading Standards team last October, a large kitchen knife was sold to an underage test purchaser at the Premier store (159 Bosworth Drive, Fordbridge). No age-related checks were carried out.
Subsequent enquiries revealed that the seller, a family friend of the shop owner, was underage themselves and not employed at the store. The owner, Navaratnam Oppilamani, although not present at the time of the sale, admitted in an interview to the underage sale.
On Tuesday 16 May 2023, at Birmingham Magistrates Court, Mr. Oppilamani pleaded guilty to the underage sale of an age-restricted product. He was fined £125, with £200 towards costs and a £48 victim surcharge. A licence review will now be undertaken.
Councillor Wazma Qais, Cabinet Member for Communities & Leisure, said:
“We are pleased with the outcome of this case and thank the Trading Standards team for their continued work to keep Solihull safe.
“We are committed to ensuring that businesses operating in the borough do so legally. This is not only for the sale of knives but for any age-restricted products, including: alcohol, tobacco, vaping products, fireworks, etc.
“The Council will continue to carry out test purchase operations throughout the borough. If you have any concerns about the sale of knives in the community, please report this to Solihull Council on 0121 704 8001.”