Shocking photos show inside a Chinese takeaway that was forced to shut down immediately as it posed an "imminent risk to health”.
Kensington Takeaway in Liverpool was fined £6,000 and ordered to close its doors when environmental health officers discovered a mouse infestation and inadequate pest control measures in August 2021.
There were mouse droppings throughout the premises, including on food preparation equipment and food packaging.
Liverpool City Council said there was a lack of regular and effective cleaning protocols, resulting in a build-up of food debris and grease, with several holes discovered that gave rodents access.
Kensington Takeaway director Mr Keihan Nikseresht Somehsaraei admitted 20 breaches of food safety hygiene regulations at Liverpool Magistrates Court on 22 December.
He was fined £5,200, plus costs of £750 and £190 victim surcharge.
The takeaway had been forced to close immediately following an inspection because of an "imminent risk to health."
Mice are known carriers of zoonoses (diseases transmissible from animals to humans), including; Salmonella, Campylobacter and Listeria and Hantavirus which can cause serious illness, especially to vulnerable people such as children, the elderly, immunocompromised and pregnant women.
After the forced closure was ordered, remedial works were undertaken and the takeaway was permitted to re-open.
But another inspection took place in March last year and mouse droppings were again evident,
The council said regular cleaning was not taking place and there were still some gaps and holes acting as entry points for mice.
The premises were closed to the public once again while improvement works took place and reopened in April following another assessment.
Kensington Takeaway is no longer operational. The premises are now under the management of a new food business operator.
In sentencing, District Judge Boswell said the conditions posed a serious risk to the health of the customer and “common sense tells you that the premises were unacceptable”.
Following the case, Mayor of Liverpool Joanne Anderson said: “This case shows a shocking disregard for people’s health and the terrible state of the takeaway could have resulted in many customers becoming extremely unwell.
“It’s a significant fine and highlights just how seriously we take these sorts of offences. It is unacceptable to operate a business in this manner and we simply won’t tolerate it.
She added: “This case sends out a strong message to food outlets across the city - don’t be complacent. Our team doesn’t just carry out one-off visits, they will come back to inspect any premises to check the appropriate standards are being maintained, and if they’re not, action will be taken.”