Huntingdon firm which ran Ely petrol station fined for mouse infestation after crisps, sweets and peanuts found contaminated with droppings and urine

Jet Garage, Witcham Toll,

Jet Garage, Witcham Toll, - Credit: Archant

A Huntingdon-based company in charge of a petrol station near Ely has been fined thousands of pounds after environmental health officers discovered it was infested with mice.

Rozina Ltd, run by Rozina Hafiz, of Saunders Close, pleaded guilty to eight counts of breaching food safety regulations after officers found evidence of rodent contamination at the Jet fuel station, between Earith and Ely.

Appearing at Cambridge Magistrates’ Court last Thursday, the company was fined £3,000 and ordered to pay £1,500 costs and a victim surcharge.

The charges related to visits by environmental health officers to the premises in December 2013 and February 2014, following a complaint from a customer.

Maggie Camp, prosecuting for East Cambridgeshire District Council, said evidence of mouse excrement had been discovered near food items and other items showed evidence of having been gnawed by the rodents.

Ms Camp said a number of food safety breaches were discovered, which included placing food on the market that was unsafe – namely crisps, confectionery and peanuts – due to contamination with mouse droppings and urine and failure to ensure that adequate procedures were in place to control pests.

Liz Knox, environmental services manager at the council, said: “This successful prosecution came about as a result of a customer complaint that the shop had mice.

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“On inspection, our officers found evidence of an uncontrolled mice infestation. They found food which was contaminated by mice which was on sale to the general public – for example, they discovered crisp and peanut packets which had been gnawed and surrounded by mice droppings.

“Anyone running a shop where food is being sold has a responsibility to the public to ensure their hygiene levels are the best they can be. Clearly this was not the case at this establishment.

“Taking this legal action is always a last resort but we are determined to protect public safety and ensure standards are kept high across the district.”