These shocking pictures show the appalling state of a kebab van whose owner has been banned from running a food business for repeatedly ignoring food hygiene laws.
Mehmet Cokgezici’s fridge was nearly twice the maximum recommended temperature and coleslaw was left out to fester in the summer heat for hours.
He was banned him from running a food business for three years after repeatedly ignoring advice from environmental health officers at Mid Suffolk District Council.
Cokgezici, 32, admitted eight food hygiene offences, including letting bread rolls touch raw meat, at Bury St Edmunds magistrates’ court earlier this month.
The first three offences were from August last year when he failed to comply with food hygiene notices issued in July.
These included having no hot water for handwashing and inadequate record keeping.
The other five offences were for failing to comply with food safety provisions.
They were recorded during an inspection in December carried out after Cokgezici, of Woolpit, Suffolk, continued to ignore the law.
Magistrate Susan Taylor described Cokgezici continued failure to comply with food hygiene standards as “aggravating” and ordered him to pay £2,120 in addition to his ban.
Speaking after the hearing, environmental health officer Sara Proctor said: “It is always disappointing when a food business ends up in court and at Mid Suffolk and Babergh we work with businesses to try and prevent this from happening.
“In this case, however, we found continued non-compliance with food safety requirements over many months.
“This was not a decision taken lightly, but one we felt necessary to protect the public and thankfully the magistrates agreed.”
Tests by inspectors found chilli sauce in the van was 32.8°C, when it should have been a minimum of 63°C.
Coleslaw had also been left out for hours and was recorded at 30.3°C in the height of summer.
The fridge was 14.9°C when it should have been no more than 8°C.
Cokgezici claimed he had taken over the business, called Flames Kebabs, from Servet Soyturk and the conditions in the July visit had nothing to do with him.
He said after Mr Soyturk returned to Turkey he tried to clean the van following the July inspection.
But the December inspection found there were still huge failings and the council decided it have no option but to prosecute.
Cokgezici asked magistrates give him a “second chance”.
He said he had been working in the food industry in the UK for 15 years, the past four in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk and was unable to work in another industry.
Crediting his guilty plea, magistrates fined Cokgezici £100 for each of the first three offences, plus £200 for each of the next five offences.
He must also pay £800 prosecution costs to the district council and a £20 victim surcharge.
The council dropped a charge alleging Cokgezici obstructing an inspector, which he denied.
He is still free to work in the food industry, as long as he is not managing a businesses.
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