AN Oak Mall store has been slapped with a warning from the authorities for selling electronic cigarettes to underage teens.

Trading Standards and the police swooped on American Candy in the Greenock town centre following complaints.

They launched a joint investigation after parents raised the alarm about school children getting their hands on vapes in town centre stores.

Both American Candy and Lights and Gifts, in Jamaica Street, were among those visited by officers.

The Oak Mall store was hit with a written warning over the complaints around the sale of vapes to under-18s.

One outraged mum, who contacted the Tele but asked to remain anonymous, said: "It is an absolute scandal.

"Kids in school uniforms are going into the shops and getting their hands on vapes and cannabis oil canisters.

"Something needs to be done about it.

"A few parents have complained but nothing has been done about it.

"I phoned and spoke to the police, who told me it was a licensing issue.

"It is against the law - I mean you can't buy an ashtray but kids are getting vapes."

Tony Alam, who owns American Candy, today confirmed that they had been visited by trading standards and received a written warning.

He said: "We have a good relationship with trading standards.

"We never knowingly sell to under-18s.

"We are now keeping a log of all young people who come in and show ID, and those we refuse.

"We were unclear about some of the rules around some of the products.

"We have also been told to move some of our tobacco products out of reach and lock them away."

Lights and Gifts in Jamaica Street was also visited by trading standards and given advice.

But owner Mohsin Kahn insists they operate a strict policy.

He said: "We get many routine visits by trading standards.

"I have not been made aware of any complaints about selling to under-18s.

"We would never do that, we are really strict and we are always refusing sales.

"Sometimes older people come in and we know they are handing them out, so they are refused as well."

Sergeant Jason Logsdon of Greenock police confirmed that they had received complaints and had visited a number of premises.

An Inverclyde Council spokesperson said: “Our trading standards service and our community police partners conducted a joint visit to two premises in Greenock on September 29 regarding the sale and supply of vape and tobacco products in response to complaints being received.

“Both premises were subject to a full inspection and one of the premises was issued a written warning by trading standards and both were given appropriate advice and guidance regarding legislation and their responsibilities.”