Page last updated at 14:49 GMT, Saturday, 27 February 2010

Ex-landlord jailed over smoking ban at Bolton pubs

Nick Hogan
Nick Hogan lost his job after he was convicted of breaching the ban

A former pub landlord who is thought to be the first person in the UK to be jailed after flouting the smoking ban is "devastated", his wife says.

Nick Hogan, 43, from Chorley, was sentenced to six months in prison for failing to pay fines for smoking ban breaches at his two Bolton pubs.

Hogan was found guilty of breaching the smoking ban in January 2008 at the Swan and the Barristers pubs he ran.

His wife Denise said the couple "never expected" he would be imprisoned.

The original hearing was told that on the day the ban came into force he organised a "mass light-up" in the two pubs.

He hasn't harmed anybody and he isn't a criminal
Denise Hogan

He was fined £3,000 and ordered to pay £7,136 in costs.

Mrs Hogan, 53, said that following the conviction her husband lost his job and was unable to keep up with the £125-a-week fine payments.

He was jailed on Friday by magistrates in Bolton.

Mrs Hogan said: "He's not a smoking campaigner or anything like that.

"He didn't want to change the law, he just thought if people wanted to smoke it should be their choice.

"We never expected him to go to jail. He hasn't harmed anybody and he isn't a criminal.

"He was allowed to ring me from jail last night but we could only speak for just two minutes. He is devastated."

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