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Calls to make possessing tobacco a criminal offence for under-16s

Wednesday 27 February 2013

Tobacconists and petrol station owners are calling on parliament to make it a criminal offence for the under-16s to be caught with tobacco products, the Telegraaf reports on Wednesday.

Shopkeepers caught selling cigarettes to youngsters face a fine of €450 but the young teenagers themselves get off scot-free, the organisations argue.

'The youngsters get away with it. But why should the responsibility not be shared?,' Edsko Schuitema of petrol station owner lobby group Beta is quoted by the paper as saying.

The two organisations were reacting to European Commission plans to make tobacco companies include off-putting images of the health risks associated with smoking on every packet.

'If you want to stop a 14-year-old buying cigarettes, you have to fine them for possession,' said Gert Koudijs, of the tobacconist shop owners' assocation NSO.

MPs are considering plans to increase the age at which teenagers can buy cigarettes from 16 to 18, following industry calls for an increase.

On January 1, it became a criminal offence for the under-16s to be caught with alcohol. If they are caught with alcohol in bars or at events they face a cash penalty.

MPs will vote later on Wednesday on proposals to increase the age at which teenagers can buy alcoholic drinks from 16 to 18. All but the anti-Islam PVV and the D66 liberals are in favour.

Earlier stories
The Netherlands may increase legal age to buy cigarettes
Under-16s face charges for possessing beer

 

© DutchNews.nl



 

Readers' Comments

LOVE THIS! Please government bring it in! Protect kids from hurting themselves. If an adult wants to smoke fine, but keep the kids safe until they have developed enough sense to make an informed decision

By Sarah | 27 February 2013 10:42 AM

Prohibition has never solved addiction problems. It has always made thigs worse.

By Philippe | 27 February 2013 11:55 AM

"If you want to stop a 14-year-old buying cigarettes, you have to fine them for possession,' said Gert Koudijs, of the tobacconist shop owners' assocation NSO."

what a non-sense... since when fine people will stop them to doing stupidities? See all traffic lights and bicycles in Amsterdam... HELLO...... Education and infomration is the answer.

By Jose | 27 February 2013 12:44 PM

All these laws will do is create more criminals while increasing the attraction to smoke and drink beer. Bad mix.

By Puck | 27 February 2013 5:51 PM

While I agree we need to find a way to reduce smoking for health reasons, surely there must be another way to approach this.
Is it really such a good idea to give teens a criminal record for buying a pac of cigarettes?
It's hardly the same level as assault or murder!

By Donaugh | 27 February 2013 6:54 PM

Turning 16 0r 18 year olds into criminals for possession of alcohol and/or tobacco is not going to "save" them from these drugs. Rather, such laws place supply of them into the hands of street dealers selling other illegal drugs. I suppose the laws will make organised crime very happy - but it is more about politics than youngsters.

By Max Harmreduction | 27 February 2013 7:38 PM

Another attempt to make people breaking the 'law'.

By Leo Gerritsen | 28 February 2013 5:51 AM

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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