Police fear Kettering shop bid could continue illicit tobacco sales

Illegal tobacco found at Maja Sklep.
Illegal tobacco found at Maja Sklep.

Police have raised concerns over a new licensing bid for a shop which is just doors away from one caught selling illegal cigarettes.

A hearing has been called over an application to sell alcohol at Rockingham Euromarket, 26-28 Rockingham Road, Kettering.

Police say the applicants are associated with the people involved in the sale of illegal tobacco at Maja Sklep – at 30 Rockingham Road – which recently had its licence revoked.

A report set to be discussed by councillors today (Thursday) said: “The applicant has received a warning from trading standards for the sale of illegal tobacco while working at the aforementioned premises.

“During the police licensing officer’s investigations relating to Maja Sklep, the applicant was filmed on body-worn video in that premises.

“The mobile phone number given on the application form relates to one of the previous licensees at Maja Sklep.

“The police believe that this application is to allow the continuation of the sale of illicit tobacco following the revocation of the Maja Sklep licence.”

Earlier this month the owner of Maja Sklep was given a suspended prison sentenceafter being caught with more than 700 packets of illegal cigarettes.

He was also ordered to serve 150 hours of unpaid work and ordered to pay full legal costs and a victim surcharge, totalling £1,499.

If the latest licensing bid is approved, the shop would be able to sell drinks from 8am to 11pm every day of the week.

The meeting takes place at 2pm in the Kettering Council chamber.