The owner of a restaurant that was so filthy a food safety officer said it was “one of the worst cases he has seen in more than 20 years” has been jailed.
Alomigir Qureshi, 47, was also sentenced for employing an illegal immigrant at his Chai Wallah restaurant on Yarm High Street and for breaching a suspended sentence he received in 2013 – also for employing failed asylum seekers. Qureshi, of Brisbane Grove, Hartburn, Stockton was jailed for a total of 21 months at Teesside Crown Court.
Richard Bennett, prosecuting for both the Crown and Stockton Borough Council, told the court that the council’s food safety officers were tipped off by a member of the public who had been served chicken which was raw in the middle and another person who was concerned that the chef’s clothing “appeared filthy”.
Inspectors found dirty tea towels thrown over eggs and dough as well as dirty food preparation and storage areas, shelves and pipework. Mr Bennett said: “In the opinion of the inspectors there was a total disregard for food safety and no evidence of any good hygiene practice.”