Ahold Stores Debate Fines

Tops Markets and Wilson Farms, convenience store chains operated by Dutch grocer Royal Ahold, are contesting charges that cigarettes were sold to minors at one store in each chain, according to the Buffalo (N.Y.) News. Four other Niagara Falls stores have paid $300 penalties for underage tobacco sales.

Ahold, which operates more than 300 convenience stores and online grocer Peapod in the United States, declined comment on its decision to contest the fines, which range from $50 to $125.

Compliance checks carried out by the Niagara Falls Police Department resulted in charges that minors succeeded in buying cigarettes at a total six stores, including the Ahold stores. Only the Tops and the Wilson Farms stores have sought hearings on the charges, which will likely take place in the next two weeks.

Conceding the violation and paying the price were two Rite Aid drug stores, a Star Food Market and the USA Gasoline Mini Mart.
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