Press release

Restaurant company director disqualified for failing to ensure his company complied with food hygiene legislation

Mr Arnold Jacob, the director of a company running a restaurant in Leamington Spa, has given an Undertaking not to act as a company director for 5 years.

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The disqualification followed an investigation by the Insolvency Service, with support from Warwickshire’s District Health and Community Protection team (the Team).

Mr Arnold Jacob was director of Vantom LS Ltd, which traded as the restaurant Kayal at 42 Regent Street, Royal Leamington Spa, CV32 5EG, between 2010 and June 2014. During this time the Team made at least 14 visits to the premises, 2 of which were undertaken following complaints from members of the public.

As a consequence of these visits, Mr Jacob was notified of 34 breaches of food hygiene legislation. The Team also issued 5 notices requiring Mr Jacob to improve food preparation and storage at the restaurant, and conducted 2 formal interviews. In 2011 the Team issued a caution warning to Mr Jacob that he could face prosecution if he did not improve the food hygiene standards at the restaurant.

Although Mr Jacob did resolve some of the food hygiene issues, he failed overall to satisfy the Team, which deemed the restaurant not safe for the public. In July 2014, the Team successfully prosecuted the company for breaches of food hygiene legislation, resulting in the maximum fine of £20,000 being levied on the company.

The Insolvency Service subsequently disqualified Mr Jacob from acting as a director on the grounds that he had failed in his duty as a company director to ensure the restaurant complied with the relevant food hygiene legislation – as required of all restaurants.

Sue MacLeod, Chief Investigator of Insolvent Investigations, Midlands & West at the Insolvency Service, said:

That directors who demonstrate such blatant disregard for legislation which is there to protect the public, can expect action will be taken by the Insolvency Service to remove them from the market place.

Notes to editors

Vantom LS Ltd (Company Registration Number 07158569) was incorporated on 16 February 2010 and traded from 42 Regent Street, Leamington Spa CV32 5EG. The sole director was Mr Arnold Jacob.

The restaurant was sold by Mr Jacob as a going concern in June 2014. The company was subsequently placed in voluntary liquidation on 12 August 2014 because it could not pay the £20,000 fine imposed as a result of the prosecution in July 2014.

The Judge felt the maximum level of fine should be imposed for the offence of unfit food.

Inspections between 2010 and 2014 identified various matters of concern, including foods unfit for human consumption; soiled kitchen utensils and old food debris; unhygienic conditions in the staff washrooms; and poor maintenance of the premises and outside yard.

Mr Jacob undertook the position of company director whilst working full time.

Arnold Jacob is of Leicester and his date of birth is 6 August 1975.

A disqualification order has the effect that without specific permission of a court, a person with a disqualification cannot:

  • act as a director of a company
  • take part, directly or indirectly, in the promotion, formation or management of a company or limited liability partnership
  • be a receiver of a company’s property

In addition that person cannot act as an insolvency practitioner and there are many other restrictions are placed on disqualified directors by other regulations.

Disqualification undertakings are the administrative equivalent of a disqualification order but do not involve court proceedings.

Further information on director disqualifications and restrictions can be found here.

The Insolvency Service administers the insolvency regime, investigating all compulsory liquidations and individual insolvencies (bankruptcies) through the Official Receiver to establish why they became insolvent. It may also use powers under the Companies Act 1985 to conduct confidential fact-finding investigations into the activities of live limited companies in the UK. In addition, the agency authorises and regulates the insolvency profession, deals with disqualification of directors in corporate failures, assesses and pays statutory entitlement to redundancy payments when an employer cannot or will not pay employees, provides banking and investment services for bankruptcy and liquidation estate funds and advises ministers and other government departments on insolvency law and practice.

Further information about the work of the Insolvency Service, and how to complain about financial misconduct, is available.

All public enquiries concerning the affairs of the company should be made to: Insolvent Investigations Midlands & West, 3rd Floor Cannon House, 8 Priory Queensway, Birmingham, B4 6FD Email: Adminteam.Midlands&est@insolvency.gsi.gov.uk

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Published 24 February 2016