First Hackney business fined over £1,000 for flouting smoking ban

Havana's cafe in Lower Clapton Road.

Havana's cafe in Lower Clapton Road. - Credit: Archant

A café has been fined over £1,000 for flouting the smoking ban in Hackney.

Eren Hussein, who runs Havana Café in Lower Clapton Road, is the first person to be prosecuted by Hackney Council for the offence after environmental health officers discovered two members of the public smoking cigarettes inside the cafe in February.

The ban was introduced nationally over six years ago, and officers are usually able to work with businesses to enforce it rather than take legal action.

Environmental health officers had been working with the business for more than a year before the incident in February to provide a legal structure in which to allow shisha smoking.

The owner had already been sent a written warning after smoking was witnessed inside the building. Mrs Hussein did not attend court, but was handed a fine of £500 for the offence at Thames Magistrates’ Court, with full costs of £570 and a victim surcharge of £50, bringing the fine to £1120 following the conviction under Section 8 of The Health Act 2006.

Cllr Feryal Demirci, cabinet member for environmental health, said: “The smoking ban in enclosed spaces exists to protect the public and members of staff from the dangerous effects of second-hand smoke.

“We try to work with businesses to help them provide a legal structure in which to allow smoking but we will prosecute owners who continue to flout the ban.”

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Mrs Hussein was not available for comment.

The council is calling on anyone with concerns about premises allowing illegal smoking in an enclosed space to call 020 8356 4911.