Takeaway operator at centre of E.coli outbreak is jailed

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THE operator of a takeaway responsible for an outbreak of E.coli in which nine people were taken ill – one of them critically – has been jailed for eight months.

Ramazan Aslan, who at the time ran the Llay Fish Bar near Wrexham, was also banned from running a food business in the future by way of a hygiene prohibition order at Mold Crown Court yesterday.

Mr Justice Griffith-Williams claimed Aslan had ignored previous warnings even though it would have cost little to put things right.

“You knew the risks, you chose to ignore them,” he said.

The judge said he accepted that there was no malicious intent by Aslan but could not accept the defence claim that he had been complacent.

“The only explanation is that you were wholly indifferent to the need for thorough food hygiene and for the health and safety of your customers,” he said.

“While I have had regard to your previous good character and to the inevitable burden upon your wife if you go to prison, I have concluded these offences are so serious that there must be an immediate sentence of imprisonment,” he said.

Aslan, of Victoria Road, Ellesmere Port, admitted that in July, 2009, he failed to protect food that had been cooked, and that ready-to-eat food was not protected at all stages of production, processing and distribution, against contamination, which was likely to render the food unfit for human consumption.

He failed to notify the council that he had become the food business operator at the fish bar in Council Street, Llay; failed to put in place permanent procedures to identify hazards or corrective actions; failed to ensure that his food management procedures were up to date; and failed to have adequate pest control procedures.

He also admitted that being responsible for the development of a food safety management procedure at the premises, he had received inadequate training.

Karen Morrisroe, 34, of Rhosnesni, who was admitted to Wrexham Maelor Hospital, after becoming one of the victims of the E.coli outbreak, said after hearing the sentence: “I am surprised that he was jailed. I didn’t expect that. However, I think it sends out the right message.

“It says to other people they should take heed of the hygiene regulations.”

- The takeaway is now under new management not linked to the previous Llay Fish Bar management.

See full story in the Leader

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