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Walsall kebab shop owner fined over mouse infestation

By Jordan Reynolds | Walsall | Crime | Published:

The owner of a mouse-infested Walsall takeaway has been fined for serious food safety and hygiene breaches.

New Kebab Ranch. Photo: Google

Director and owner Sanawar Hussain failed to control pests and keep the New Kebab Ranch in Bradford Street clean.

Hussain appeared before Wolverhampton Magistrates Court yesterday where he pleaded guilty to neglecting to control pests and failing to keep the food business clean.

Hussain, the director of New Kebab Ranch Ltd, and the company itself were ordered to pay a combined total of £3,995.62.

During a routine visit to New Kebab Ranch in May 2019, Environmental Health officers discovered the breaches and ordered it immediately be closed.

Inside the takeaway. Photo: Walsall Council

Walsall Council said mouse litter was on the floors - including in serving areas, kitchen floors, under sink areas and where food was prepared - and droppings were on the floor underneath kebab spits and the hot holding areas.

More rodent litter was found on storage area floors, behind freezers, on a metal plate at the back of a freezer, and underneath the shop’s staircase.

Hussain had previously been warned about pest control issues and his cleaning practices in April 2018.

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Inside the takeaway. Photo: Walsall Council

Council officers ordered him to replace a plastic drain cover in a shop storage area to stop pests getting in. Officers also had concerns about ceiling and wall points where mice could potentially gain access.

District Judge Murray said: “I have taken into account that the premises were previously visited in April 2018 and that following on from that visit, when officers visited the premises on May 20 2019 the photographs produced show long term negligence and no exercise of any supervision.

"The risk in this matter was significant because the mice droppings were under the kebab spits and grill as well as under the storage unit for hot holding fried chicken.

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"I find the environmental health officers visit in April 2018 to be an aggravated factor in this matter following the report that was prepared and the findings found.

"I do not consider his lack of experience in the food trade to be a mitigating factor. It is more an aggravating factor because the public are entitled to know they are not being exposed to harm.”

Councillor Garry Perry, portfolio holder for regulatory services at Walsall Council ,said: “Repeat offences like this are completely unacceptable, especially as we provide free and appropriate advice so food businesses can meet the required standard.

“Mice carry a range of bacteria that if passed to humans through their urine or droppings can cause serious illness. Credit must go to our Environmental Health officers for protecting the people of Walsall and making this man accountable. If you run a food business, by law - you must protect your customers. Failure to do this will mean a summons to court, a hefty fine or even a custodial sentence.”

New Kebab Ranch at Bradford Street, Walsall is no longer trading.

Jordan Reynolds

By Jordan Reynolds
Reporter - @jreynolds_star

Senior reporter at the Express & Star.

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