Owner of a mobile takeaway food operation Mehmet Cokgezici sought a hearing at Ipswich Magistrates Court on Tuesday 22 August to request the court lift a Prohibition Order which they had imposed in 2016.
Mr Cokgezici had pleaded guilty to eight food hygiene offences at the hearing in 2016 which included exposing food to risk of contamination in various ways, dirty equipment, and a lack of a food safety management system. The Prohibition Order was made preventing him from managing a food business for three years.
The Flame Kebabs van owned by Mr Cokgezici, which previously traded outside the train station in Elmswell, has not been in use since the 2016 hearing.
At court on Tuesday Mr Cokgezici, from Wrights Way, Woolpit, representing himself, advised the court that he was embarrassed about what had occurred previously. He said that Mid Suffolk District Council had been right to take action against him at that time. He also stated that he had undertaken further hygiene training and now wished to start-up his business again.
Simon Smith, Solicitor representing Mid Suffolk District Council, attended the hearing along with two of the Council’s Food & Safety Officers in order to oppose the lifting of the Prohibition Order. Mr Smith advised the court that the original court case had made the national press due the appalling conditions and practices found back in 2015. He also advised that Mr Cokgezici had not approached the Council for any advice prior to the new hearing to lift the Prohibition Order, and the Flame Kebabs unit had not been inspected since the original court case. He said that the Council’s Food & Safety Officers were more than willing to offer advice if needed and suggested Mr Cokgezici make direct contact with them.
On questioning from the Bench, Mr Cokgezici told the Court that it was his intention to return to operating Flame Kebabs if the ban was lifted. He also admitted that the kebab van did require some improvement work prior to being reinstated.
After deliberation, the Court advised Mr Cokgezici that they would not lift the Prohibition Order, but recognised that he had attended and passed the Level 3 food hygiene course. The Court suggested he make contact with the Council’s Food & Safety Officers to take the advice offered.
Mr Cokgezici can reapply to the Court to have the ban lifted in no less than three months.