Bognor takeaway has licence revoked after pills found in kebab
A BOGNOR Regis takeaway has been stripped of its licence after unknown pills were found by customers in a kebab.
The incident was reported to police by three women who claimed to have found the pills after buying food from the Istanbul Grill on High Street.
Following calls from Sussex Police, Arun District Council’s licensing sub-committee have voted to strip the takeaway of its licence.
Barrister Peter Savill, representing Sussex Police, described how a package of pills ‘identical to those found in the kebab’ were discovered in the shop’s storage area during a search of the premises and that the pills were a ‘branded name of Viagra’.
Owner Afshin Ali-Zadeh apologised for a number of mistakes made relating to his licence but could not explain how or why the pills might have ended up in food served to customers.
Speaking through a translator, Mr Ali-Zadeh said: ‘Why would I damage my own business and put pills in my customers’ food?’
Mr Ali-Zadeh’s claimed that the pills were for his own use ‘when he felt unwell’ and that they were different to the ones found in the food.
‘The allegation is baseless. Something happened in my shop but I was not involved,’ said Mr Ali-Zadeh.
David Bateup, a licensing officer at Sussex Police, explained that the pills found in the kebab had been sent off to be forensically examined and they were still waiting for results to come back.
The hearing also heard the takeaway owner had not adhered to the conditions of his premises licence as he had not hired the required door staff for Friday and Saturday evenings and had not checked the CCTV system was working until just before installing a new one in December.
In his defence, Mr Ali-Zadeh said that his English was not good enough to understand the licence document fully and it was eventually translated with the help of a friend.
The committee voted to revoke the premises licence but this decision can be appealed.