Portsmouth’s Perfect Pizza fined thousands over poor conditions

Uncovered chicken in dirty containers in the main chiller at Perfect Pizza in North End
Uncovered chicken in dirty containers in the main chiller at Perfect Pizza in North End
Gosport High Street.
Picture Ian Hargreaves (171552-1) PPP-170211-170421006

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INSPECTORS found cockroaches and dirty buckets of chicken at a Portsmouth takeaway.

An environmental health officer from Portsmouth City Council discovered two cockroaches at Perfect Pizza in London Road, North End, and poor conditions.

An immature cockroach in the food preparation area of Perfect Pizza in North End

An immature cockroach in the food preparation area of Perfect Pizza in North End

Owner Abdul Majid and his company North End Fast Food, have been fined thousands of pounds.

Majid nodded as his firm was fined £8,000 with £1,319 costs and a £30 charge.

Magistrates fined him personally £1,200 with a £20 victim surcharge.

Sentencing, chairman Stephen Waller said: ‘These are serious offences.

Rubbish in the back yard of Perfect Pizza in North End

Rubbish in the back yard of Perfect Pizza in North End

‘We were satisfied that at the time your management structure was disorganised and therefore the local authority had to spend some time and energy finding out who was the responsible person.

‘You’re dealing with public health matters and people could have been seriously ill as a result of this.’

The shop now trades as The Perfect Kebab Company.

Opening the case at Portsmouth Magistrates’ Court, prosecutor Jenny Ager said: ‘This case concerns the environmental health officer Christopher Larkin’s findings during an inspection of Perfect Pizza on November 17 last year.’

The council team was tipped off after a pest control worker from the council was called in to clean up a cockroach infestation in the flat above.

He feared the insects could spread downstairs.

Along with two cockroaches, Mr Larkin found sinks that had no soap or hand towels, rubbish piled high in the rear yard, and raw kebabs and burgers that were stored near ready-to-eat food.

Majid had also failed to register as a food business operator for the shop.

Liyen Edin, mitigating for Majid, said: ‘He wasn’t aware of the conditions. He himself was shocked.’

Owner Majid was away abroad when Portsmouth City Council inspected the property. Bizarrely two other people said they were in charge of the place while Majid, 36, also of London Road, was away.

One even turned up to be interviewed by investigators at the civic offices – before the council finally tracked down who was in charge.

Majid and the firm each admitted eight offences under the Food Safety and Hygiene (England) Regulations 2013.

They were: the premises structure and rear yard were not maintained in good repair and in a clean condition, there were inadequate materials for washing hands in the toilet room and kitchen, premises construction did not allow protection against pest ingress, kitchen equipment was not clean and in good order, raw materials were not kept in appropriate conditions, food handlers were not trained, a food safety management system was not maintained, and Majid failed to register as a food business operator.

The News used a photograph of the shop front of Abdul Majid’s kebab house in London Road, Portsmouth, in a story about a prosecution for poor hygiene.

Majid and his firm, North End Fast Food Ltd, were fined thousands of pounds over a shop referred to as Perfect Pizza at Portsmouth Magistrates’ Court. The photograph published on page seven showed an old shop front in London Road with logos belonging to Perfect Pizza, of Elm Grove, Southsea.

This company has nothing to do with the prosecution of Majid’s firm.

Majid’s firm trades as The Perfect Kebab Company.