Kingsbury shisha bar owner given maximum fine for breaking smoking ban

Mohammed Ethari was fined £2,500 - the maximum

Mohammed Ethari was fined £2,500 - the maximum - Credit: Archant

A shisha bar owner has been given the maximum fine allowed for letting his customers smoke on his premises.

Mohammed Ethari was hauled before the courts after Brent Council enforcement officers visiting Rotana Lounge in Kingsbury Road, Kingsbury, noted customers smoking shisha pipes in the bar.

Willesden Magistrates Court heard Ethari advertised his café as tobacco sampling premises and claimed customers were testing shisha molasses and not consuming the product.

However, officers discovered this was a front to allow shisha smoking.

Mr Ethari pleaded not guilty but was convicted of allowing smoking in a commercial premise and not displaying a no-smoking sign and was handed down the maximum fine of £2,500.

He must also pay £2,000 cost to Brent Council and a £120 victim surcharge.

Ethari was not in court to hear his sentence so a collection order will be issued against him in due course.

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This is the forth time a shisha bar owner has tried to use the defence of being a specialist tobacconist to get around the smoking ban and so far Brent Council has won all cases brought against.