Mr Qurbain Hussain owner of Gangal Ridley Halal Butchers was finally found guilty of four offences under the Food Safety Act 1990, relating to the sale of meat unfit for human consumption,at Thames Magistrates Court on the 15th January 2007. Despite committing these offences over two years ago it has taken until this week to obtain a conviction, and that was only due to the tenacity of Dr Yunes Teinaz, Acting Head of Environmental Health, who took steps to ensure that Mr Hussain was arrested at Heathrow Airport as he arrived on a flight from Pakistan.
He was the first person ever to be arrested on his return to the UK for selling unfit meat.
The Magistrates were told that this was the seventh time the matter had to came before the court, so this was reflected in the sentence. Mr Hussain was fined £3,600-00 and ordered to pay £4,000 costs to Hackney Council.
The sentence follows an extensive investigation by Hackney Councils Environmental Health following the original raid in September 2004 on Mr Hussain's shop, the Gangal Ridley Halal Butchers, 20-24 Ridley Road, London, E8 2NR.
The Officers found a quantity of meat unfit for human consumption, including decomposing pomos (the snout, lips and cheeks of cattle ), chicken breasts, turkey legs, poultry gizzard, poultry wings, and poultry breasts. These could have been carrying undetected bacteria which can cause serious illness.
Councillor Alan Laing, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods said: "Hackney residents are entitled to buy food that is fit to eat, and we shall continue to protect the public by removing from sale unfit food and, where necessary, take legal action against traders. This is supported nationally by the Food Standard Agency, who are concerned over both the food fraud and improper importation of meat and similar foods."