Councillors welcome crackdown on Market Street pedlars as council take enforcement action.
On Friday afternoon together with colleagues in GMP, Trading Standards, Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) and Licensing Compliance an operation was carried out to ensure pedlars operation on Market Street were complying with street trading legislation including the Manchester City Council Act 2010.
A total of 9 officers took part in the operation which involved ensuring each pedlar had a valid certificate and was complying with the Manchester City Council Act 2010. GMP carried out PNC checks on each individual and also checked their immigration status. Colleagues from Trading standards checked if any pedlars were selling counterfeit goods, whilst DWP carried out checks regarding benefit fraud.
Officers spoke to 12 Pedlars in total, who were all able to produce a valid pedlars certificate. One pedlar, who had a slight correction on his certificate was asked to ensure he obtained a new certificate and to cease trading until he had done so.
GMP carried out name and address checks and also immigration status of all the pedlars. There were 3 individuals who advised they were nationals of Spain and France. Although Immigration had no details regarding these individuals they have been advised by GMP to provide a valid passport or driving licence when they are next in the city centre. GMP officers have details of all 3 individuals and recognise them as being regulars on Market Street. They have warned them that should they fail to produce these documents, they would be arrested and Immigration Service called out.
Trading Standard Officers seized a small amount of goods from 3 separate pedlars and will be writing out to them.
- 5 phone chargers were seized as they did not appear to comply with Electrical Regulations
- 20 bracelets/bands were seized as not having trademark
- 2 Manchester City scarfs seized for being counterfeit
One pedlar left his goods during the operation which were seized by officers. CCTV have footage of this pedlar, who later rang the office to ask for his goods back. He advised the officer he had gone to use the toilet and when he returned his cart had been taken. He has been informed that if he wishes to have his goods returned, he must come to the town hall with a valid pedlars certificate and ID.
DWP advised that whilst they did not find anyone committing benefit fraud, they have noted a number of addresses which they will be doing further checks upon. They will advise us if they establish any further information which needs investigating.
Cllr Kevin Peel said:
"Pedlars on Market Street are a constant source of complaints from residents and visitors to the city.
"Unfortunately there is very little we can do. Virtually anyone can walk into a police station and purchase a pedlars licence for a small fee. However these sort of joint operations can weed out those who do not have a certificate or who are selling counterfeit goods."
We are hoping to arrange another joint agency operation in December and will provide details when confirmed. In the meantime if you require any further information, please do not hesitate to contact your councillors.