A SHOPKEEPER has been ordered to pay more than £1,000 and carry out unpaid work after selling fireworks to a minor and stocking illegal cigarettes.

Valiollah Hassanzadeh, who ran the Mars A Day shop on Lumb Lane appeared at Bradford Magistrates' Court to answer the charges.

Hassanzadeh pleaded guilty and was sentenced to a community order requiring him to do 110 hours of unpaid work, with an order that the tobacco products and fireworks be forfeited and destroyed.

He was also ordered to pay costs of £1,235, which included a victim surcharge of £85.

The prosecution came about after West Yorkshire Trading Standard officers visited the shop in October last year as part of an underage test purchase operation.

A 14-year-old volunteer was offered and purchased fireworks which were being sold individually for £1 each. On two more visits the following month, illegal cigarettes were also recovered from behind the counter.

David Lodge, of West Yorkshire Trading Standards, said: “The sale of fireworks to minors causes disorder and a threat to public safety.

"As the time of year approaches when fireworks will again be going on sale to the public I would like to use this case to highlight to traders their responsibility to check the age of their customers. West Yorkshire Trading Standards will be out again this year ensuring that fireworks are not sold to children.”

Councillor Abdul Jabar, Bradford Council's Executive Member for Neighbourhoods and Community Safety, added: “Shopkeepers need to be aware of their responsibilities, particularly at this time of year.

“Selling cigarettes and fireworks to children risks damaging their health as well as contributing to anti-social behaviour.

“These laws are there for a good reason and we will crack down hard on anyone who flouts them.”

Councillor Jo Hepworth, Chair of the West Yorkshire Joint Services Committee which oversees the work of trading standards, said: “Fireworks can be a fun family activity when used responsibly however they can be extremely dangerous if falling into the wrong hands, including those of minors.

"Research has shown that illicit cigarettes are also easily available to children and young people due to their low price so it is crucial that we get to grips with this problem. I am reassured the service will continue to take legal action against those that act irresponsibly and sell fireworks or tobacco to people underage.”