Spelthorne Council has successfully prosecuted Shanghai Village Limited for numerous food hygiene and health and safety offences.
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Included in the prosecutions are directors Beng Chong Yeoh and Guang Hao Fang as they have day-to-day responsibility for the running of the restaurant at141-147 High Street, Staines-upon-Thames
The Council’s Environmental Health Officer witnessed significant food hygiene and health and safety contraventions during inspections on 1 June, 4 July and 17 October 2011.
On 4 July 2012, Staines Magistrates heard evidence of poor hygiene including:
- inadequate cleaning in the kitchen
- inadequate hand washing facilities
- and a failure to protect food from the risk of contamination.
Observations included a container of lemon sauce with a fly in it and cooked lemon chicken stored in an unlined cardboard box and left unrefrigerated. The evidence featured photographs of dirty kitchen sinks, utensils and work surfaces. One kitchen worker sneezed before continuing to prepare food without washing his hands.
The Court also heard that the owners did not ensure that kitchen staff wore clean and suitable protective clothing. The health and safety of these staff was also put at risk through a slippery floor in the kitchen. Mssrs Yeoh and Fang failed to maintain the premises in good repair and condition whilst documentary and procedural requirements had not been satisfied.
Both men pleaded guilty to 11 charges brought under The Food Hygiene Regulations 2006 and three charges under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and were convicted of these offences. The maximum fine which could be imposed in the Magistrates Court would have been £5000 per charge (food hygiene) and £20,000 per charge (health and safety). However, as the breaches were very serious and persistent, the magistrates decided to refer the case to Crown Court for sentencing. The Crown Court has the power to impose an unlimited fine and / or imprisonment for up to 12 months (food hygiene) and two years (health and safety).
Mssrs Yeoh and Fang will be sentenced at Guildford Crown Court on 3 August 2012.
Spelthorne Council’s Cabinet Member for Health, Well-Being and Independent Living, Councillor Jean Pinkerton stated: “The Council applies a graduated enforcement approach and prosecution was the last resort having exhausted all other means of achieving compliance with the Food Hygiene Regulations. We hope that this prosecution will send a very strong message to all food businesses that this authority will not tolerate persistent failure to comply with food safety and health safety legislation”.