Illegal tobacco seller Roger Gerrey sold cigarettes to children

Roger Gerrey
Image caption Roger Gerrey continued to sell illegal tobacco despite a raid

A man who turned his Devon home into a shop selling illegal cigarettes to school children has been spared a jail sentence.

Roger Gerrey, 65, from Lemon Place, Newton Abbot, was selling fake brands to children, Exeter Crown Court heard.

In two raids on his house nearly £13,000 in cash and £14,000 worth of tobacco were discovered.

Gerrey was given a 12 month sentence, suspended for two years, after admitting seven offences.

He admitted two offences under the trademark laws, three under consumer protection laws and two of selling tobacco to children.

The court heard that Gerrey's house was raided by Devon trading standards officers in June 2013 when 602 packets of rolling tobacco and 555 packets of 20 cigarettes worth about £14,000 were found, along with £11,870 in cash.

Gerrey admitted that the money came from selling illegal tobacco, but despite knowing that he was under investigation he continued to sell illegal tobacco.

The money seized from Gerrey was forfeited by the court.

Roger Croad, Devon councillor with responsibility for trading standards, said Gerrey had been convicted of a "serious criminal offence".

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