Fast food operator takes away fine from court

The owner of a city centre takeaway has been ordered to pay nearly £2,500 by magistrates for allowing staff to pile loose bags of putrid rubbish behind his shop.

Mohammed Butt, who runs Capones on New Briggate, pleaded guilty to two offences committed under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 when he appeared at Leeds Magistrates court last month.

Butt was ordered to pay a £1,000 fine along with £1,352.91 in costs and a £100 victim surcharge.

Environmental action officers received a complaint about uncontained waste to rear of takeaways on New Briggate last September. They found around 40 bags of leftovers and general rubbish piled on the ground, which had clearly been there for some time.

Knowing the area was already being treated by the council’s pest control team for a rat infestation, officers were keen to identify the source of the waste.

Items in the bags led them to Capones. While investigating, officers witnessed staff from the shop illegally dumping more bags on the ground in sight of a large trade waste bin.

Butt had previously been issued with a legal notice by environmental action officers in May 2012 to ensure there was a suitable bin to contain the shop’s rubbish and that waste must be put in the bin at all times.

Although Butt cleared the bags of rotting rubbish, he was prosecuted as he’d allowed waste to be illegally deposited, hadn’t put in place sufficient measures to prevent this and had let waste escape from his control.

Councillor Mark Dobson, executive member for the environment, said:

“We have an £8million annual bill for street cleaning and when waste is strewn across streets because it’s not been dealt with or secured properly, this is another drain on our resources.

“Businesses are legally required to store and dispose of their rubbish and everyone has a civic duty to help us keep Leeds clean and green.

“When businesses fail to keep up their end of the bargain, we won’t hesitate to take action”.

Caption: Some of the waste environmental officers found piled behind Capones on New Briggate.

For media enquiries please contact:

Amanda Burns, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 395 1577

email: amanda.l.burns@leeds.gov.uk