Anees Butt escapes a jail sentence but is banned from running food outlets
Image of Taste of Himalayas: Google Streetview
The owner of the Merton Road fast food restaurant currently known as Butt Da Taba & Pizza has narrowly avoided a prison sentence after local magistrates were told that he had put public health at serious risk.
Anees Butt has been prosecuted by the borough's food safety team for "allowing his filthy and mouse-infested restaurant to pose an 'appalling' health hazard to its customers."
The restaurant - previously known as the Taste of the Himalayas - had already previously received a zero hygiene rating from Scores on the Doors, the UK's largest source for food hygiene ratings.
An example of the filthy food prep areas
Local food safety teams reported that the restaurant was covered in food debris and grease, as well as being riddled with mouse droppings. Food prep and storage areas were found to be grimy and staff were working under the threat of serious injury or even death due to unsafe and defective electrical wiring and inadequate safety procedures.
After one inspection officers from the food safety team ordered immediate evacuation of the restaurant after they found a leaking gas pipe - which staff and the owner were unaware of - next to a grill.
A bag of flour gnawed by mice
Wimbledon magistrates ordered Anees Butt to carry out 80 hours of community service rather than face a jail term. He was fined a total of £12,000 and ordered to pay court costs of almost £5,000.
Cllr Jonathan Cook, consumer protection spokesperson for the borough, says, “The court heard an absolute catalogue of appalling failures by Mr Butt to run a safe business combined with a series of failed opportunities to put things right... He had ample opportunity to improve conditions in his business but his cavalier attitude to safety and public health meant he showed himself to be quite unfit to be operating a food business."
Scores on the Doors collates information on local food hygiene ratings according to the Food Standards Agency codes of practice. Wandsworth's Food Inspectors examine 2200 premises in Wandsworth each year to ensure that food sold to the public is safe to consume.
March 8, 2018