Minimum Penalty Imposed | Kangs Food Safety & Hygiene Offences Defence Solicitors
Kangs Solicitors has recently defended a prosecution of a client in a manner which he described as
being ‘unimaginable’ to him.
Our client, a company director, was facing prosecution for breaches of the Food Safety and Hygiene
(England) Regulations 2013.
Sukhdip Randhawa of Kangs Solicitors outlines the events.
The Environmental & Food Safety Team at Kangs Solicitors regularly represents businesses and their proprietors subjected to investigation and prosecution for offences arising under the Food Safety and Hygiene Regulations across England and Wales.
For an initial no obligation discussion, please contact our team at any of the offices detailed
0207 936 6396
0121 449 9888
0161 817 5020
The Circumstances | Kangs Environmental Health Offences Defence Team
During inspection of our client’s business premises on 28 April 2022, Health and Safety Officers discovered:
- Mouse droppings in a walk-in chiller storeroom and
- Further droppings in a walk-in chiller storing food packets
As there existed an imminent risk to health, a Hygiene Prohibition Notice was issued and our client was prevented from any food activities until the risk to health had been removed.
How We Assisted Our Client | Kangs Health and Food Safety Solicitors
Prior to instructing Kangs Solicitors, our client had attended a formal Interview, at which his previous solicitors were also present, during which various Admissions had been made.
Such Admissions substantially restricted the nature of the defence that could be presented on our
client’s behalf and by way of a proactive realistic approach, we indicated to the Council, at an early
state, that our client may be minded to enter a ‘guilty plea’.
By way of preparing our client for the court hearing, the Team at Kangs Solicitors:
- Collated and examined in detail all the case papers and pertinent trading documents,
- Attended our client advising upon the extent to which the Admissions made at his Interview restricted the options available to him and we directed him as to the most appropriate way of proceeding in order to resolve the proceedings in the most favourable manner available
- Conducted detailed negotiations with the Prosecution attempting to reach an acceptable agreed sentencing structure based upon the Official Sentencing Guidelines
- Prepared a detailed Bundle of Documents containing evidence in support of mitigation on behalf of our client to be put before the District Judge for his consideration, when sentencing our client
The Hearings and Successful Conclusion | Kangs Food Safety Defence Solicitors
Following the initial Hearing at the Magistrates’ Court, the District Judge, having viewed the available
material, decided that his powers of sentencing were insufficient for the severity of the offence as presented to him by the Prosecution.
Accordingly, he committed our client to the Wolverhampton Crown Court to enable its greater
sentencing powers to be exercised.
Faced with such change of court venue, the Team at Kangs Solicitors identified and instructed
suitably experienced counsel who, utilising the Mitigation Bundle compiled by our Team, prepared
Defence Sentencing Submissions for consideration by the Sentencing Judge.
At the Sentencing Hearing, the Judge:
- Accepted all of the Defence Submissions
- Rejected the Prosecution Submissions in relation to the ‘starting point’ for calculating
- Dismissed the Prosecution suggestion that the fine to be imposed upon our client should be based upon his means rather that the assets and finances of his defaulting company
- Imposed the minimal financial penalty possible, being a fine of £667 together with Prosecution costs and a Victim Surcharge
Having been transferred to the Crown Court for the exercise of its greater powers, our client was,
quite understandably, very apprehensive as to the extent of the Sentence which may be imposed
This highly successful outcome was truly ‘unimaginable’ to him and he was highly grateful for this
outcome achieved on his behalf by the Team at Kangs Solicitors.
How Can We Help? | Kangs Environmental Health Investigations Solicitors
The Team at Kangs Solicitors, as a matter of course, regularly represents businesses, company
directors/officers and individuals who are required to attend formal Interview or defend criminal
allegations of whatever nature.
When faced with such eventualities or the possibility of the same, experienced legal guidance should
always be sought.
As will be seen from the above, the making of Admissions at interview can be very restrictive upon
the future conduct of a Defence but expertise can still enable a satisfactory outcome to be achieved.
We are pleased to advise and assist clients in relation to every aspect of criminal prosecutions,
including those involving Food Safety & Hygiene matters and Environmental Health Investigations at every stage.
Please do not hesitate to contact any of our Team below who will be delighted to assist you.