London: Restaurant fined for serving mouldy chicken as crab

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Fined for pretending mouldy chicken was crab meat, Lagos Island, Wlathamstow Council

The Lagos Island restaurant in Leyton, East London was told to close by environmental health inspectors. But when he refused to, inspectors dug deeper and caught the restaurant owner red-handed, serving a customer mouldy chicken that he told the person who order it, that it was crab meat.

Gaby Kolajo, 52, who was originally order to close after inspectors found a mouse and cockroaches in the kitchen of his restaurant, was fined £10,000 after he was caught red-handed serving customers at a birthday party held at the Lea Bridge Road premises in September 2018.

When officers queried why he was still open he responded saying that only one half of the premises had been shut down as a result of the prior inspection.

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As a result officers conducted another full search and were horrified to find what they believed was a container of mouldy chicken in the kitchen. Kolajo insisted however, that it was actually a traditional Nigerian dish of boiled crab according to Walthamstow Council.

Appearing at Stratford Magistrates Court, Kolajo was handed the largest fine possible, £10,170 including £2,000 in council costs and a £170 victim surcharge for the meal on December 7.

Council deputy leader Clyde Loakes said: “The magistrate clearly saw through Kolajo’s claims and used their full powers as a warning that such behaviour will not be tolerated. The state of the kitchens was bad enough but the owner decided to ignore the environmental health officer and the court to continue serving customers, putting their health at serious risk.”


Continuing he said: “As a local authority we have limited powers in what we can do to a business, even one that so egregiously ignores order. But you can rest assured that we will use all the powers available to us to take action against the minority of food business operators who do not take their responsibilities seriously like Mr Kolajo.”

Lagos Island who was fined for serving a customer mouldy chicken that the owner pretended was crab, was last inspected in July 2020 and given a food hygiene rating of zero. A zero rating means the establishment requires urgent improvement usually being ordered to shut until the worst of the problems have been dealt with.


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