A UK wholesaler stocking dangerous phone chargers and designer fakes is facing a penalty of almost £15,000 following an investigation by the local government authority’s trading standards officers.
The chargers failed to meet British electrical safety standards and had the potential to overheat or explode. There were also counterfeit Apple iPhone items including front screens, back plates and covers.
Banoch Kumar, director of Mr Phone Limited pleaded guilty on behalf of the company at Ealing Magistrates Court to nine charges of having for sale unsafe electrical phone chargers and 11 charges of having for sale counterfeit phone and electronic accessories.
Ealing Magistrates Court ordered the company to pay £7,040 in fines for stocking fake goods and £3,465 for breaching electrical safety laws. He will also have to pay Ealing Council’s legal costs of £4,405.93 and a victim surcharge of £20, bringing the total penalty to £14,930.93.
Officers from Ealing Council launched the investigation after being contacted by colleagues from Suffolk County Council who had discovered a container full of unsafe mobile chargers imported from China by Mr Phone Limited at the port of Felixstowe in November 2011.
A large amount of counterfeit items discovered by Ealing trading standards officers on an inspection of the business in April 2012, were found in a concealed room. All items will now be destroyed.
Ealing Council leader, Julian Bell said: “Unsafe electrical items can overheat, cause fires or give electric shocks. I therefore hope the size of the penalty serves as a warning to any trader thinking of putting profit before their customers’ safety.”