Woman given suspended jail sentence after catalogue of food hygiene offences

A woman who was already banned from operating a food business has been given a suspended prison sentence for ignoring the court order and for a catalogue of food hygiene offences while running a pub in Weston-super-Mare in 2016.

Kim Gasson was found guilty on six charges of failing to comply with food hygiene regulations and also of contravening a Hygiene Prohibition Order issued in Cornwall in 2015. Appearing at Bristol Crown Court for sentencing following conviction at North Somerset Magistrates Court, she was sentenced to a nine-month custodial sentence, suspended for two years and ordered to pay £4,825 costs plus an additional victim’s surcharge.

In 2016 officers from the Food, Licensing and Environmental Protection teams at North Somerset Council visited the Major of Glengarry public house on Upper Church Road in Weston where they found mouldy and rancid food, cooked rice covered in fruit flies, filthy equipment, out of date food and evidence of rodents in the cellar. An emergency prohibition notice was served to close the business immediately.

Kim Gasson was subsequently charged with food hygiene offences with a co-defendant and also with ignoring the  court order, issued in Cornwall in 2015, prohibiting her from operating a food business.

Neither of the co-accused appeared at the first court hearing and warrants were issued for their arrest. Kim Gasson’s co-defendant pleaded guilty to the six offences at North Somerset Magistrates Court in August 2017 but, as co-accused, reporting has been restricted until now.

Deputy Leader of North Somerset Council, Cllr Mike Bell, said: “The seriousness of these offences is reflected in the sentence handed down by the judge. Kim Gasson had a flagrant disregard for food hygiene putting her customers at risk.

“This case shows the advantages of having a good food inspection regime and I would like to commend our officers and legal team for their persistence in bringing this complicated case to a successful conclusion.”