SINGAPORE - A shop in Bedok has had its tobacco retail licence revoked after it was found to have repeatedly sold tobacco products to minors.
Two other outlets - a 7-Eleven at 523 Bukit Batok Street 52 and Blu Jaz Pte Ltd at 11 Bali Lane - have had their licences suspended by the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) for six months for the same offence. Both sold tobacco products to those under-18 for the first time.
Bedok Goodwill Store, located at 79 Bedok North Road, had already seen its licence suspended for six months in 2012 for the offence.
Despite that, the outlet continued to offend, most recently selling tobacco products to three minors in school uniform in two separate incidents on the same day, the HSA said in a press release on Wednesday (Jan 13).
The seller also took the opportunity to profit from the sales by selling the cigarettes at a higher price than the actual retail price. Its licence was revoked on Dec 10 last year, meaning it will no longer be allowed to sell tobacco products, the release said.
The HSA said that the three sellers, all employees of the respective outlets, failed to check the age of the minors before selling them the tobacco products. They were caught thanks to HSA's ground surveillance and enforcement activities.
It has reminded licensees that they are responsible for all transactions of tobacco products at their outlets, and for the actions of their employees.
Anyone convicted of selling tobacco products to those under 18 faces a fine of up to $5,000 on the first offence, and a fine of up to $10,000 for subsequent offences.
In addition, the tobacco retail licence will be suspended for six months for the first offence, and revoked for the second.
However, any outlet found selling tobacco products to anyone under 18 in a school uniform, or anyone below 12 years of age, will have its licence revoked, even at the first offence.
Twenty-five licences have been suspended and 22 revoked in the last three years, HSA said.
A list of these retailers can be found here: http://www.hsa.gov.sg/content/hsa/en/Health_Products_Regulation/Tobacco_...
Anyone with information on the illegal sales of tobacco products to minors can call the Tobacco Regulation Branch at 6684-2036 or 6684-2037 during office hours.