Manager of popular St Albans chicken take away convicted of food hygiene offences
- Credit: Archant
Flouting food hygiene laws has resulted in a former St Albans takeaway manager being hit with £5,000 costs towards prosecution fees, and a lifelong ban from managing a food business.
But the sentencing of Nisar Hussein, who used to run Murgano’s in Victoria Street, has concerned the eatery’s new owner, who fears his business will be tarnished as a result.
St Albans district council successfully brought a prosecution against Hussein, who was sentenced for 12 food hygiene offences at the magistrates’ court last month.
Apart from Murgano’s being in a state of disrepair, the offences ranged from having no soap or hot water for the wash basin, to having uncapped wastewater pipes and an uncovered sump pipe in the kitchen. The premises also used an unhygienic chopping board, and there was no food safety management system or training in place.
Hussein was further convicted of two charges of obstructing a council officer by giving false information.
He was given a 12-month community order, requiring him to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work.
Hussein was also ordered to contribute £5,000 towards the prosecution costs and banned indefinitely from controlling or managing a food business.
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The Kilburn man had admitted all the charges at a hearing in December last year.
Environmental health officers from the council served 12 food hygiene improvement notices on Hussein in July 2014 after an inspection of the takeaway and diner.
The council then launched a criminal prosecution when a follow-up visit revealed he had failed to comply with any of the notices.
Michael Lovelady, the council’s head of legal services, hailed the successful prosecution, saying it showed the authority “will not tolerate food businesses in the district that fail hygiene standards laid down by law.”
The new owner of Murgano’s peri peri chicken eatery has reassured customers that a major refurbishment of the premises has now been carried out.
Ibrar Ahmed told the Herts Advertiser: “The first I knew about the prosecution was when someone texted me.
“Since I took on the café in May last year the premises have been completely refurbished because everything was outdated.
“We shut down for three weeks, to refurbish everything from top to bottom, so we haven’t had any issues.
“I’m worried that when this is in the paper, people will think it is us, and we will suffer, even though this happened with the former manager, in 2014. He just up and left. We will be asked questions about him.
“We would like to reassure people we don’t have anything to do with the former management.”