A Sutton mum who showed a “callous disregard” for children after being caught selling fake superhero costumes online has been spared jail.

Anna Karetnikova, who operated as an Amazon and eBay business seller from her home in Osborne Place, was convicted after being prosecuted by the council’s trading standards team.

One of the mum-of-two’s fancy dress costumes had a “sharp piece of wire” puncturing the fabric, which could have caused a “severe” eye injury.

It was also argued the plastic packaging on several of the items were “unsafe” and could cause asphyxiation.

Your Local Guardian:

Karetnikova's attic where she kept the fake superhero costumes

She was prosecuted after pocketing thousands of pounds in profit by purchasing the fake goods from China before selling them on during the course of three years.

Her Honour Judge Deborah Charles said: “You are an educated woman. To my mind you should have appreciated the dangers of what you were doing.

“You have a callous disregard for the children who would end up wearing these costumes.

“Any right-minded member of the public would find it shocking that a mother of young children could be selling costumes to other parents that could seriously injure their children.”

Your Local Guardian:

A sharp object puncturing the children's superhero costume

Karetnikova traded under the name OSBORNESHOP2015, the court heard during the mum's sentencing.

A search of her home in June 2017 revealed she had an attic full of counterfeit stock, including 1,200 children’s costumes and more than 100 electrical chargers.

She pleaded guilty to possessing fancy dress costumes during April and June 2017, contrary to Toy Safety Regulations 2011, as well as a Samsung adapter which was prohibited by the Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 2016.

Karetnikova was handed a six-month jail sentence but it was suspended for 18 months after the judge praised her for the guilty plea, previous “good character” and potentially low risk of reconviction.

The mum must also do 100 hours of unpaid community work while the items seized by the council’s trading standards will be destroyed.

Your Local Guardian:

One of the fake superhero costumes being sold

Judge Charles said the case “undoubtedly crosses the custody threshold” and the case was brought against Karetnikova following a complaint by Rubie’s Masquerade Co. UK Ltd.

A Sutton Trading Standards spokesman said: “This shocking case demonstrates how seriously the courts take the sale of unsafe and counterfeit goods, especially when – as there so often is – there is a risk to the public.

“In this case, there was a risk to children.

“This prosecution has resulted in the perpetrator being handed a suspended prison sentence. That will inevitably have life changing consequences for the individual.

“We hope this serves as a lesson to anyone either engaged in dealing in counterfeit trade or considering it.”