An illegal street trader operating in Wembley has been hit with a fine and banned from entering the borough of Brent for a year, after being caught selling knock off football scarves during an FA Cup match in April.
Eric Williams, of Lots Road in Chelsea, was caught selling the counterfeit scarves during the FA Cup Semi Final between Chelsea FC and Tottenham Hotspur on 22 April 2017, despite receiving advice and a formal warning from Trading Standards after he was caught selling fake scarves at a previous Wembley event.
When approached by Brent Council Trading Standards and Licencing officers, who seized fake 39 scarves, Mr Williams was described as being obstructive and aggressive towards the officers – a charge he later pleaded guilty to in court.
On 13 June 2017, Mr Williams was found guilty in his absence of unlicensed street trading and ordered to pay a total of £1,026 in fines and costs at Willesden Magistrates’ Court. However, due to the seriousness of his offences and the fact that Mr Williams failed to turn up to court, a warrant was issued for his arrest.
On 3 July 2017, Mr Williams pleaded guilty to all remaining offences, including selling counterfeit Tottenham and Chelsea Scarves and the obstruction of officers carrying out their duties, at Willesden Magistrates Court. He was given an exclusion order from the London Borough of Brent for 12 months and ordered to pay costs of £200 and a victim surcharge of £85.
The court heard that Mr Williams was also in breach of a Criminal Behaviour order, which prevented him from unlawful street trading at Wembley events, as he had been caught trading illegally before.
Cllr Tom Miller, Cabinet Member for Stronger Communities, said:
“Football fans come to Wembley to support their teams and enjoy a memorable day out – they aren’t here to be ripped off by rogue traders hoping to make a quick buck.
“The rules are there for a good reason, and I’m really pleased with the hard work of our officers in upholding the law and protecting both consumers and the legitimate businesses who trade on event days.
“I hope this case encourages others considering selling fake goods to think twice about their actions, whether that’s on the streets, on stalls or in shops. We want Brent to be a place where genuine and legitimate businesses thrive, and illegal traders that ignore the rules and previous advice given to them, will be taken through the courts.”