A restaurant in Dunstable has been fined for selling fake Smirnoff Vodka to customers.
Tong Sam Oriental Cuisine, of High Street North, was caught out by Central Bedfordshire’s Food Safety team during a test-purchasing exercise in December 2016.
Officers were sold a drink from a bottle labelled as the Smirnoff brand vodka when they visited the Chinese restaurant on 12 December. But tests revealed that it was not the genuine product. That led to the trading firm Huakang Limited and its food operator Han Wang being prosecuted.
As Wang pleaded not guilty to the offence, a trail took place in September. At Luton Magistrates’ Court on Monday, November 19, Han Wang was found guilty of a total of four offences for selling counterfeit alcohol by the company and himself as its director.
Huakang Limited was fined £6,000 ordered to pay costs of £2,997.95 and a victim surcharge of £170, totalling £9,167.95.
Han Wang was fined £390, ordered to pay costs of £500 and a victim surcharge of £30, a total of £920.
The prosecution was as a result of council officer visits to more than 100 businesses during 2016 and 2017 across Central Bedfordshire. They carried out on-site checks looking for businesses serving alcohol that had been watered down, or who had swapped known brands with cheaper or fake alcohol.