Lady Danger
Paul Lamerton was sentenced at Plymouth Magistrates' Court after being found with fake lipstick. Plymouth City Council

A rogue trader was spared jail after admitting he sold fake lipstick, called Lady Danger, which contained 300 times the legal level of lead.

Paul Lamerton was handed a suspended sentence after he sold the lipstick that could cause high blood pressure, cardiac, reproductive and neurological problems.

In addition to those serious conditions the lead in Lady Danger can also cause neurological damage to unborn babies if used by pregnant women.

Using social media networks like Facebook and online sales platforms like eBay the 47-year-old sold the fake MAC lipstick for £6 each or four for £15 in contrast to the £16.50 for the authentic product.

Plymouth Magistrates' Court heard that tests revealed the lipsticks contained 3702mg/kg of lead, with the permitted limit 10mg/kg.

Lamerton was also selling fake mascara and kids' Minion and Barbie watches before he was raided in June last year by trading standards officers after a tip off.

A number of fake items were seized in the raid along with packaging materials for posting them.

The court heard how Lamerton made a £823 profit selling the fake goods between 2012 and 2016, reported the Plymouth Herald.

Lamerton pleaded guilty to seven trading standards offences and was given six weeks in prison, suspended for 12 months for each offence. The sentences will run concurrently.

Magistrates had initially said the offences should each carry a nine-week sentence but this was reduced because of his early plea and remorse.

Lamerton was also ordered to pay £400 costs and £115 victim surcharge.

Defending Lamerton, Julian Jefferson, said Lamerton had given up work to care for his terminally ill wife and wanted to earn "a few extra quid".

After the case Councillor Dave Downie, cabinet member for safer and stronger communities said iin a statement: "These items were not only fake, but some were dangerous.

"The products may look like the real thing, but were not and consumers can put their health at risk by using them. The level of lead in one sample was incredible.

"Legitimate companies comply with regulations that are designed to keep us safe but counterfeiters avoid costs incurred and the taxes by legitimate companies."