Hitchin café owner from Baldock fined more than £6,000 for food hygiene offences

Stevenage Magistrates Court

Stevenage Magistrates Court - Credit: Archant

The owner of a Hitchin café who lives in Baldock was fined more than £6,000 after pleading guilty to four food hygiene offences.

Cumaali Duru – who is director of Dogan Catering Ltd, which trades as Manny’s Café in Churchgate, Hitchin – was ordered to pay a total of £6,211 by Stevenage Magistrates’ Court on Friday.

The 40-year-old’s company was also charged with breaching four food hygiene offences including failure to provide a room suitable for food preparation, failure to keep the premises clean, failure to protect food from contamination and failure to maintain a food management system.

The prosecution brought by North Herts District Council saw magistrates impose a fine of £1,000 per offence against the business, totalling £4,000 plus a £120 victim surcharge. The company was also ordered to pay a contribution of the council’s legal costs of £678.

In sentencing Mr Duru as the company director, the magistrates imposed further fines of £167 per offence, totalling £668, plus a victim surcharge of £67, ordering him to pay an equal contribution toward the council’s legal costs of £678.

Councillor Bernard Lovewell, responsible for environmental health at the district council, said: “Our environmental health officers work hard to ensure anywhere serving or preparing food maintains hygienic standards for the protection of the public.

“We hope this prosecution sends a clear message to other food outlets we will not tolerate unhygienic practices putting people’s health at risk.”

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During mitigation, the defendant advised the court the business had turned a corner and, working closely with the council’s environmental health team, had since been awarded a food hygiene rating of four stars meaning ‘Good’.

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