Manufacturer fined £16,000 for importing “electric shock” body massagers following Brent Council investigation

15 April 2021

Vivo Technologies Ltd pleaded guilty to five charges of supplying and placing on the market 1,800 unsafe electric body massagers at Willesden Magistrates court, following an investigation by Brent Council Trading Standards. The company was fined £16,000 and was ordered to pay costs of £4,000.

In August 2019, the Trading Standards Service made an online test purchase of the body massager from the company.

The massager was sent for testing and showed failures in construction that put users at serious risk of electric shocks, as well as not meeting the labelling requirements under 2016 Electrical Equipment Safety Regulations.

Brent Trading Standards instructed the company to issue a recall and to suspend sales of the items.

The Magistrate noted that previous warnings had been given to the company by Trading Standards Officers. They said that the company had not "changed any of your procedures and were still not compliant - it's not good enough".

The Magistrate continued, "ignorance is never an excuse when dealing with public health safety".

Alan Lunt, Strategic Director for Regeneration & Environment at Brent Council, added, "Brent Trading Standards has been working tirelessly to protect local consumers, adapting to the challenges the pandemic has posed and the growth in online sales. It has been a tough year for businesses, but there's no excuse for putting people at risk and we will take action when traders are found to be breaking the law."

Anyone who believes a business is selling counterfeit or unsafe goods should report it to Citizens Advice on 0808 223 1133. They will pass information to the local council for investigation.