Low-cost retailer 123 Mart has been found guilty of selling thousands of unsafe children's clothes and toys.
The Commerce Commission said in a statement today that 123 Mart had been found guilty in the Auckland District Court of selling seven types of toys with small parts that presented choking hazards for young children. It sold some 9000 non-compliant toys.
After a defended hearing, it was found guilty on July 7 of 17 charges under the Fair Trading Act, with five additional charges being dropped at the conclusion of the trial.
The company had previously pleaded guilty to five charges relating to the sale of more than 1200 children's sleeping pants which did not have required fire danger labels and more than 11,000 items of clothing that did not include labelling requirements for "care, origin and content", the commission said.
The enforcement and regulatory agency undertook three investigations into 123 Mart, which was given compliance advice in 2012 and then warned in 2013.
Charges were laid in May 2016 and additional charges in August that year.
"During the charge period 123 Mart operated approximately 60 retail stores throughout New Zealand, with a multi-million dollar turnover and a very large number of product lines," the commission's statement sad.
The store specialises in low-cost consumer products including toys, costumes and cosmetics. It started operating in New Zealand in 1995 and has shops under four different brands: The 123 Mart, Dollar Store 123, King Dollar Store and Max!Out.
The commission said 123 Mart had withdrawn all the toys and clothing from sale.
The company is to be sentenced on October 13.
- "My Baby Concert" trumpet
- "My Baby Concert" rattle
- "Toys" wind-up snake set
- "The World of toys" house set with small components
- Small "Magnetic letter and number" sets
- Dream House set
- Butterfly on a walking stick
- Fairy Doll toy
- Beaut Surprised girls dolls
- Musical Band set
- Children's sleeping pants - no fire labelling
This article was first published on nzherald.co.nz and is republished here with permission.