Illegal Finsbury Park shisha smoking den shutdown

An illegal shisha den where customers brazenly flouted the smoking ban has been shutdown and the owner left with a �6,000 bill.

The Manhattan Shisha Lounge ran for several months earlier this year in Seven Sisters Road, Finsbury Park, with visitors smoking cigarettes and water pipes.

After residents raised concerns, Islington Council staff with police and fire officers raided the premises on April 4 and May 13 and discovered 68 bongs.

The owner Hanad Adulqadir Mohamoud, 27, of Wood Green, closed the cafe in June.

At Highbury Corner Magistrates Court on October 13, Mohamoud was found guilty of 16 smoke-free offences under the Health Act 2006.

He was fined �4,500 for obstruction and providing false information and ordered to pay council costs of �1,638.11

Jan Hart, Islington Council’s director of public protection, said: “This was perhaps the clearest breach of the smoking ban in Islington since the law changed in 2007.

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“We’re committed to protecting residents’ health. We would much rather work with businesses than prosecute them but because this was such a serious case we had no choice.

“Many people don’t realise the dangers of shisha smoking. The smoke inhaled contains dangerous chemicals which can cause cancer and lung damage. Cigarettes were also smoked at the cafe.”

Islington Council and NHS are preparing a health information campaign to warn shisha smokers about the risks, which can include lung cancer, irreversible lung damage and tuberculosis and oral herpes from sharing dirty mouthpieces.

Businesses which want advice on smoke-free regulations should call Islington Council’s environmental health team on 020 7527 3816. For help with stopping smoking call NHS Stop Smoking Service in Islington free on 0800 093 9030.