3 May 2010

Cigarette retailers 'still flouting law'

9:57 pm on 3 May 2010

Health authorities in Hawke's Bay say retailers continue to flout the law and sell cigarettes to young teenagers.

The Hawke's Bay District Health Bpard recently carried out a controlled cigarette-buying operation in Napier and Hastings, with a 14-year-old girl as the buyer.

Medical Officer of Health Caroline McElnay says that five retailers sold tobacco to the girl, and that, alarmingly, in two shops a 13-year-old and a 14-year-old were working behind the counter selling cigarettes.

Dr McElnay says retailers need to be aware of the consequences if they're caught breaking the law.

The DHB is in the process of prosecuting four retailers caught last October allegedly selling cigarettes to minors.