Restaurant owner fined over filthy premises

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Leicester’s Chilli Tree Restaurant owner Isim Ali fined £3,000

THE owner of a Leicester restaurant has been ordered to pay more than £3,000 in fines and prosecution costs after rat droppings, gnawed food debris and filth were discovered at his premises.
Officers from Leicester City Council’s food safety team visited the Chilli Tree Restaurant, in Evesham Road, last December and found rat droppings and chewed food in the food preparation areas, along with other food debris and grease.

A back door had been left open, enabling pests to get into the premises, and no pest control company had visited the restaurant for a number of weeks.

Restaurant owner Isim Ali, aged 56, of Gotham Street, Highfields, admitted two offences under the Food Hygiene (England) Regulations 2006 when he appeared before Leicester magistrates last week.

He pleaded guilty failing to keep the business clean and maintained in good repair and condition, along with a charge of having inadequate pest control procedures in place.

He was fined £1,000 for each of the offences, and ordered to pay Leicester City Council’s prosecution costs of £1414.40, along with a £15 victim surcharge.

The court heard how Ali had a history of poor compliance with food law, and was already subject to a simple caution – an alternative to prosecution – after an inspection in September 2010 when the restaurant was found to have no hot water, poor food handling practises, and a lack of cleaning or proper training for staff.

Leicester assistant city mayor responsible for neighbourhood services, Cllr Sarah Russell, said: “People who visit restaurants in the city should be able to rely on them meeting a good standard of food hygiene, but in this case the Chilli Tree fell below that.

“This enforcement action was needed as a way to ensure the restaurant owner tackles the pest control, hygiene and cleanliness issued raised by our visit.”

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