An illegal street trader selling the herbal drug khat from the boot of his car in Southall has been fined following an investigation by Ealing Council.
Khat is a leaf which has stimulant effects when chewed. In July the Home Secretary announced plans to ban the drug but currently it is still legal.
Mohamed Arfan Butta, pleaded guilty at Ealing Magistrates Court on Thursday, 5 September, to two charges of having goods for sale without a street trading licence on Hortus Road.
In 2012 Mr Butta was issued with a fixed penalty notice for £150 for unlicensed street trading. Following complaints from the public, the police visited the same spot on 5 March and 10 March 2013 and found Mr Butta with bundles of khat for sale in his car.
Mr Butta was fined £100 for each offence, ordered to pay the council’s legal costs of £200 and a victim surcharge of £20, bringing the total to £620.
Councillor Bassam Mahfouz, cabinet member for environment and transport said: “We welcome reports of illegal street trading from the public and will continue to work with the police to clamp down on this anti-social behaviour.”
To report illegal street trading go to http://www.ealing.gov.uk/reportit or call 020 8825 6000.