2 Albert Lea businesses fail tobacco compliance checks

Published 8:45 pm Sunday, August 19, 2018

Two Albert Lea businesses conducted illegal tobacco sales on Thursday during a compliance check through the Albert Lea Police Department.

A police detective supervised both a 15-year-old and 17-year-old decoy attempting to purchase tobacco products in 27 establishments.

Nelson’s Shell Food Mart and Trail’s Travel Center conducted the illegal sales, according to a press release from the Police Department.

Minnesota law requires law enforcement to conduct tobacco compliance checks at least once per year.

Retail clerks who sell tobacco to minors are issued summons to court for the first violation, which carries a maximum penalty of no more than 90 days in jail and a fine of no more than $1,000.

A second violation by the same clerk within a five-year period is a gross misdemeanor violation.  Administrative penalties of up to $250 and a seven-day suspension of their tobacco license can be assessed to businesses for failing tobacco compliance checks.