Man Fined for Rodent Infested Fast Food Store in Rubery

Rodents were discovered, dead and alive, at the store.
Rodents were discovered, dead and alive, at the store.

The owner of James’ Fast Food in Rubery has been fined almost £3,000 after rodents were discovered, dead and alive, at the store.

Haroon Kiyani, 39, pleaded guilty to seven offences including failing to keep the premises clean, not having procedures in place to avoid pests and keeping food in inappropriate conditions at his court case on 7th January 2022.

The premises, located on New Road, Rubery, were investigated by Worcestershire Regulatory Services’ Environmental Health officers on 10th March 2021 after complaints from members of the public were made about the hygiene standards. The officers found a lack of effective cleaning as excessive food debris was found on surfaces and equipment. There were also insufficient hand washing facilities which officers identified as a high cross contamination risk.

A large container was found in the rear yard containing used cooking fat which had attracted rodents to the property. A dead rat was found in the yard alongside bags of rice, sugar, and drink cans. Later during the inspection, officers saw another rat run across the yard.

A chest freezer was also found with a damp, wooden board in place of where the original lid would have been. The officers found the rim of the freezer to be covered in dirt, mould, and an excessive build-up of ice.

Inside the freezer the officer found 20 packs of raw chicken breasts and fillets. All the packages were damaged so that the meat was exposed to contamination from the dirty freezer and as such rendered unsafe for human consumption.

In total, Worcester Magistrates Court fined Mr Kiyani £2,830 along with £2,428 in costs and a victim surcharge of £190 making the total financial penalty a sum of £5,488.

A spokesperson from Worcestershire Regulatory Services has commented: “We would like to thank the officers for their swift and concise action which ensured the safety of customers and avoided any physical harm.”

“Our officers carried out a further inspection on 16th April 2021 and found significant improvement at the business. They gave the establishment a level four hygiene rating which qualified as good.”

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Ellie Ford