Former St Albans chicken restaurant owner appeals against food hygiene fines

PUBLISHED: 11:39 11 October 2017 | UPDATED: 11:39 11 October 2017

Murgano's restaurant

Murgano's restaurant


The former owner of a St Albans chicken takeaway who was fined more than £20,000 for food hygiene offences has won an appeal against the judge’s decision in court.

Food hygiene breaches at Murgano's in St Albans. Food hygiene breaches at Murgano's in St Albans.

Ibrar Ahmed, 42, who used to run Murgano’s fried chicken restaurant in Victoria Street, appeared at St Albans Crown Court yesterday to appeal against the £20, 791.56 fine he received in May.

An inspection at the restaurant by the council’s environmental health officers in May found Ahmed to be in breach of numerous food hygiene regulations. Chicken was cooked at too low a temperature, there was a risk of cross-contamination from thermometers, and surfaces, sinks and equipment were dirty. Staff were not trained properly in handling food, and did not wear protective clothing or wash their hands enough.

Ahmed, of Armitage Gardens in Luton, pleaded guilty to the offences and was given a Hygiene Protection Order because of the risks he posed to public health.

Simon Gledhill, prosecuting, said: “Prosecution was a last resort but the council had no choice other than to prosecute in this particular case.

Food hygiene breaches at Murgano's in St Albans. Food hygiene breaches at Murgano's in St Albans.

“Given the number of opportunities Mr Ahmed had to rectify the problem very few of them were acted upon.”

The restaurant was originally owned by Ahmed’s brother, Nisar Hussein, who the council took legal action against in 2015.

Alex Cameron, defending Ahmed, explained that he was trying to provide for his wife and five-year-old son back in Pakistan.

He said: “The costs should be something that the defendant has the means to pay.

“His aim has always been to earn significant capital to bring his wife and son to the UK.

“This has had quite an effect on Mr Ahmed. He has recently been diagnosed with high blood pressure. He made a decision which he regrets and he accepts responsibility for his actions.”

Recorder David Altaras lowered Ahmed’s fine to £10,450. He said: “This offence was motivated by financial gain. The premises have a long history of unsatisfactory hygiene. There was a refusal of free advice and training from the local authority.

“The most significant mitigating factor of the case is the appellant’s early plea of guilty to all the offences. The overall figure is not too high having regard to the very serious nature of these offences.

“The sooner these premises are closed the better.”


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Herts Advertiser visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Herts Advertiser staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Herts Advertiser account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More news stories

Yesterday, 22:16

A fault on the train which ruins between St Albans Abbey and Watford Junction means a bus replacement service is in effect.

Yesterday, 12:00

A 14-year-old girl has braved open water to achieve her Duke of Edinburgh’s Bronze award.

Yesterday, 10:00

A high-flying Harpenden minister will skydive for the first time to raise money for a charity’s renovation.

Fri, 15:15

A robber armed with what is believed to be a handgun stormed into a supermarket demanding money this morning.

Digital Edition

Read the The Herts Advertiser e-edition E-edition

Local business directory

Hertfordshire's trusted business finder
Zoo Watch CountryPhile

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read stories


Show Job Lists

Herts Most Wanted Herts Business Awards