The Mills Inn. Pic: Google

THE HSE has confirmed a conviction and awarding of costs against a licensed premises in Ballyvourney, Co Cork as a result of a breach of the Public Health (Tobacco) Act.

At a sitting of Macroom District Court on June 20th, a case taken by HSE South’s Environmental Health Department against An Mhuileann Teoranta trading as the Mills Inn, Ballyvourney became the most recent successful prosecution in the Cork area since the introduction of the legislation.

The defendant had pleaded guilty to a contravention of the Public Health (Tobacco) Acts 2002 as amended.

Evidence was heard that Environmental Health Officers of the HSE had visited the premises on February 11th 2012 and observed smoking taking place in a “specified place” within the premises.

Section 47(1) of the Public Health Tobacco Act 2002 as amended prohibits the smoking of tobacco products in a ‘specified place’.

However, since 2006, the HSE had been in contact with the owner of the premises and had made him aware that the room he had designated as a smoking area was not an exempted area as outlined under the legislation.

A fine of €1,000 was imposed as well as a direction that the defendant discharges the sum of €1,500 as a contribution towards the costs incurred by the HSE in the prosecution.

The defendant is also disqualified from acting as a tobacco retailer for 3 months.

Speaking after the hearing, Ms Miriam Cashell, Principal Environmental Health Officer, HSE Cork said, “Whilst overall level of compliance to the legislation has been good.

“It is important that the message goes out that the tobacco legislation is being enforced against non-compliant businesses.

“The HSE continues to actively enforce the provisions of the Tobacco Legislation and encourages members of the public to contact the National Tobacco Control Office Lo Call Information Line on 1890 333 100 about premises that may be in breach of the legislation.”