A Barnsley takeaway owner faces a fine and costs of almost £8,000 for a series of breaches of food safety, food hygiene and trading regulations.
Asim Tanvir, aged 25, who trades as Haseebs, on Barnsley Road, Cudworth, bought his business in 2011, but failed to register as the food business operator.
When council food officers visited in September 2013 he pretended he was not the owner, Barnsley magistrates heard.
The business was downgraded to a rating of three during that inspection, and Mr Tanvir was warned to remove all reference to the higher rating, but he continued to promote his business with a rating of five on advertising material.
After receiving a complaint from a customer who had ordered a lamb meal from Haseebs and was worried that the meat was not lamb, Regulatory Services Officers visited the business and took a further sample of a lamb curry.
Both the consumer’s sample and the officer’s sample was found to consist entirely of beef despite being described as lamb.
Magistrates told Mr Tanvir that it was a serious case of ‘food fraud’.
Mr Tanvir was fined a total of £5,000 plus full prosecution costs of £2,696.72 and a £120 victim surcharge - totalling £7,816.72 - after admitting a series of breaches.
Councillor Roy Miller, of Barnsley Council’s Cabinet, said: “Food fraud is fundamentally wrong and consumers should have complete faith in the food they buy.
“It is hoped that this case will send out a clear message to businesses that attempting to mislead consumers or council officers in relation to the food they are buying, the quality of the food establishment, or who is responsible for the business will not be tolerated.”
Call 01226 772468 to report food fraud.