LATEST: English actor Mel Smith has defied a smoking ban in Scotland by lighting up a cigar onstage at the Edinburgh Fringe festival yesterday (06AUG06). The comedian, playing cigar-loving former British Prime Minister WINSTON CHURCHILL in ALLEGIANCE, defied the law and calls by his producer during the first performance at the Scottish capital's Assembly Rooms. Smith earlier criticised the ban on smoking in public places, which came into force earlier this year (06), saying, "It would have delighted Adolf Hitler. Congratulations Scotland." He also threatened to warn the audience of his smoking, by saying, "A third of a Romeo y Julieta will be smoked during this performance. If you find that offensive, f**k off." The Assembly Rooms has been warned by Edinburgh Council it faces fines of up to $9,000 (GBP5,000) and could lose its entertainment licence. Smith and the producers could also be fined.