Wales

Poundstretcher fined £350k for selling faulty batteries

A tub of batteries Image copyright Getty Images

Poundstretcher has been fined £350,000 for selling faulty batteries.

Crown Crest (Leicester), the company which supplies the chain, was also fined £140,000.

Poundstretcher admitted 35 offences of supplying or offering for sale faulty or dangerous goods while Crown Crest admitted 14 charges of supplying faulty goods at stores across Wales.

Poundstretcher was also ordered to pay £20,000 in prosecution costs and Crown Crest £9,685 at Swansea Crown Court.

The firm sold Hyundai and V2 Xtreme batteries which were leaking or out of date.

'Beggars belief'

An investigation was launched by Swansea council's trading standards team, following a tip-off about sales in the city and Neath Port Talbot, resulting in more than 85,000 batteries being seized.

Counterpart officers were able to buy the faulty batteries at stores in Merthyr Tydfil, Bridgend, Newport, Powys, Wrexham, Anglesey and Pembrokeshire.

Judge Huw Davies said neither company appeared to have a method of dealing with the problem even after they had been warned.

Mark Child, cabinet member for wellbeing at Swansea council, said: "It frankly beggars belief that even after we ordered the firm to stop selling the batteries because we believed they were a danger to the public, the company continued to sell them online - many at 99p for a pack of 20.

"Their customers deserve better than to be sold sub-standard batteries which were leaking zinc and acid and putting people - especially young children - at risk of very serious harm."

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