Takeaway blasted over cockroaches

The owner of a Chinese takeaway in Wigan where cockroaches were found has been fined more than £1,700.

Thursday, 28th September 2017, 10:53 am
Updated Friday, 29th September 2017, 5:15 pm
La Orient, of Church Street, Orrell

Environmental health officials descended on La Orient, in Orrell, after reports of an infestation at the Church Street premises, borough magistrates were told.

Takeaway boss Lichei You insisted his kitchen was free of any pest problems, the court heard.

But Jessica Hodgkinson, prosecuting on behalf of Wigan Council, said cockroaches were discovered behind fridges and freezers, close to various food preparation areas.

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Magistrates were told that the shop was closed for four days while Mr You brought in a pest control company.

But when a fresh inspection took place on October 24, last year the back door had been left open, raising the risk of contamination of preparation areas.

And Miss Hodgkinson said cockroaches were found in an area, under the stairs, where potato powder, fish powder and salt were stored and a nymph was found on packaging used to wrap food.

Traces of raw chicken were also found on a sponge in a sink where cleaning equipment was waiting to be washed, the court heard.

Miss Hodgkinson said the takeaway had received a one-star hygiene rating, signalling major improvements were required, in March 2015. Several complaints had been received about hygiene concerns there and Mr You had received repeated environmental health advice.

Trevor Meegan, defending, said: "Obviously I appreciate your worships that there will be immediate revulsion at the presence of cockroaches in a Chinese takeaway in this town."

But he told magistrates his client had trusted staff to carry out deep-cleaning work, which had clearly not included areas behind fridges and freezers where problems could occur.

Mr Meegan said Mr You had now employed a pest control company to conduct regular sweeps of the premises and he supervised weekly deep-cleaning exercises.

The court heard the premises hygiene rating had improved to a three-star ‘satisfactory’ rating by June 2015.

Mr You, of Church Street, who admitted five food safety and hygiene regulation breaches, was also ordered to pay £1,308 court costs and a £174 victim surcharge.