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Last Updated: Thursday, 4 January 2007, 19:55 GMT
Skin bleaching cream couple fined
Yinka Oluyemi
Oluyemi and her husband flouted medical and safety regulations
A couple believed to have earned 1m selling toxic skin lightening creams were ordered by a court to pay nearly 100,000 in fines and costs.

Yinka and Michael Oluyemi sold banned bleaching concoctions from their two cosmetics shops in south-east London.

They admitted 10 charges of flouting medical and safety regulations between July and December 2005.

Customers who bought the preparations, risked permanent skin and blood vessel damage and even infection.

Hard-nosed

The illicit products contained banned prescription-only steroids and hydroquinone, a bleaching agent which is dangerous in excessive quantities.

The couple ignored official warnings and even previous convictions to sell banned bleaching cream from their two cosmetics shops.

Their shops, Yinka Bodyline and Beauty Express Cosmetics, were in Peckham, Inner London Crown Court was told.

Judge Nicholas Philpot, sentencing, told the couple they were "hard-nosed business people determined to make money regardless of the danger to public health".

He said while a custodial sentence was justified, exceptional personal circumstances meant he could suspend nine-month prison sentences against each of them.

They were fined 70,000 and ordered to pick up the prosecution's 22,000 legal costs. They were also disqualified from being company directors for five years.

The church-going couple, who lived in a 725,000 house in Sydenham, have three children, including one who is studying law.


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