The owner of an Indian restaurant in Aldershot has been fined £3,500 after an environmental health officer discovered cockroaches in a fridge.
Amjad Parvez Butt, the owner of Lali Gurash Restaurant, was fined £3,500 and ordered to pay £3,023 costs to Rushmoor Borough Council and a £50 victim surcharge after he appeared at Guildford Magistrates’ Court on 14th February for sentencing. He had admitted seven food hygiene offences at an earlier hearing.
The court heard that the cockroaches were discovered in the door seal of a fridge during a routine food hygiene inspection of the restaurant in Upper Union Street by an environmental health officer on 28 June 2017.
The business was immediately closed due to the imminent health risk and subsequent investigations revealed an ongoing and established infestation.
The court heard that Mr Butt was aware of the problem with the cockroaches but had unsuccessfully tried to treat it himself with household products. He had also failed to make sure that the premises were adapted to prevent entry by pests, equipment had not been kept clean and maintained in good condition, and food safety management procedures were not being implemented or maintained.
The restaurant remained closed for three weeks and was only allowed to re-open after Mr Butt was able to demonstrate that the necessary pest control treatments had been effective and remedial structural works had been carried out.
Councillor Ken Muschamp, Rushmoor Borough Council’s Cabinet member for Business, Safety and Regulation, said, “The action taken by the council sends a clear message to other food businesses that flaunting food hygiene rules will not be tolerated. It is also a warning to food business operators to act promptly in the event that they become aware of pest problems in order to avoid putting public health at risk. While we endeavour to support food businesses we take food hygiene extremely seriously and will not hesitate to clamp down on those who are failing to meet the necessary food hygiene standards.”