A restaurant owner in England has been sentenced to six years in prison after his food killed one his customers.
Indian Garden restaurant owner Mohammed Zaman, 53, served peanuts to 38-year-old Paul Wilson who had serious peanut allergies, The Guardian reports.
Even though Wilson had informed the restaurant of his allergies, Zaman’s chefs used peanuts anyway to cut costs.
After eating his takeout chicken tikka masala, Wilson went into anaphylactic shock. He was found dead, slumped over his toilet at his home in North Yorkshire.
Zaman, who also employed illegal and untrained workers, later explained he was $400,000 in debt gained while overseeing his six restaurants. He was trying to save money by using less expensive peanuts, rather than almonds, in his dishes.
Judge Simon Bourne-Arton did not empathize, noting that in the past 40 years Zaman had accumulated a property portfolio worth more than $2.6 million, the Daily Mail reports.
“You threw all that away,” Bourne-Arton said. “You have done so in pursuit of profit. You have done so in such a manner as to bring about the death of another individual. Paul Wilson was in the prime of his life. He, like you, worked in the catering trade. He, unlike you, was a careful man.”
Shortly after, authorities charged Zaman with gross negligence manslaughter and sentenced him to six years in prison.
“Mohammed Zaman received numerous warnings that he was putting his customers’ health, and potentially their lives, at risk,” prosecutor Richard Wright said in court. “Tragically for Paul Wilson, Mohammed Zaman took none of those opportunities and ignored all of the warnings he was given. His was a reckless and cavalier attitude to risk and one that we, the prosecution, would describe as grossly negligent.”
It wasn’t the first time one of Zaman’s customers had problems because of a peanut allergy.
A few weeks before the incident with Wilson, a teenage girl eating at one of Zaman’s six restaurants was hospitalized after her meal at one of Zaman’s restaurants was cooked with peanuts.
Again, workers had included the peanuts despite being informed of the teen’s allergies before preparing the food.
Sources: The Guardian, Daily Mail / Photo credit: Bon Appetit