Waltham Forest Echo

Waltham Forest Echo

Leyton restaurant shut down after selling food "unsafe for human consumption"

The restaurant was first told to shut down in 2018

Hero for Leyton restaurant shut down after selling food "unsafe for human consumption"
Unsafe food found at the Leyton restaurant (credit: Waltham Forest Council)
By Waltham Forest Echo 13 June 2022

A Leyton restaurant where the owner tried to pass off mouldy chicken as crab meat has been permanently shut down.A Leyton restaurant where the owner tried to pass off mouldy chicken as crab meat has been permanently shut down.

Lagos Island in Lea Bridge Road first came to the attention of Waltham Forest Council's food hygiene team in 2018, when officers inspected and found mice, cockroaches and mouldy food.Lagos Island in Lea Bridge Road first came to the attention of Waltham Forest Council's food hygiene team in 2018, when officers inspected and found mice, cockroaches and mouldy food.

Despite a court order to close until the problems were resolved, owner Gaby Kolajo chose to host a birthday party at the restaurant just days later.Despite a court order to close until the problems were resolved, owner Gaby Kolajo chose to host a birthday party at the restaurant just days later.

In July 2019, the council inspected the restaurant again and found even more unsafe food, including spoiled shellfish, rancid boiled eggs and mouldly cooked rice. In July 2019, the council inspected the restaurant again and found even more unsafe food, including spoiled shellfish, rancid boiled eggs and mouldly cooked rice.

Gaby finally appeared in court as a result of this inspection last month, where he tried to insist on his innocence but was ordered to pay more than £23,000 in fines and court costs.Gaby finally appeared in court as a result of this inspection last month, where he tried to insist on his innocence but was ordered to pay more than £23,000 in fines and court costs.

Lagos Island in Lea Bridge Road (credit: Waltham Forest Council)Lagos Island in Lea Bridge Road (credit: Waltham Forest Council)

Deputy leader Clyde Loakes said: "It’s shocking to see the photos of what our enforcement officers uncovered at Lagos Island and all their customers would have been appalled. Deputy leader Clyde Loakes said: "It’s shocking to see the photos of what our enforcement officers uncovered at Lagos Island and all their customers would have been appalled.

“We will use all the powers available to us to keep residents and visitors protected against food businesses that put customers at risk through negligence, greed, or laziness. “We will use all the powers available to us to keep residents and visitors protected against food businesses that put customers at risk through negligence, greed, or laziness.

“Not only was Mr Kolajo brazen in defying previous closure orders, he had the audacity to protest his innocence with a litany of frankly laughable excuses. I am pleased that the magistrate saw eye to eye with the council. “Not only was Mr Kolajo brazen in defying previous closure orders, he had the audacity to protest his innocence with a litany of frankly laughable excuses. I am pleased that the magistrate saw eye to eye with the council.

“Our message is loud and clear. Anybody unable or unwilling to maintain decent food hygiene standards in Waltham Forest will feel the full force of the law.” “Our message is loud and clear. Anybody unable or unwilling to maintain decent food hygiene standards in Waltham Forest will feel the full force of the law.”

Mouldy chicken found at the restaurant in 2018 (credit: Waltham Forest Council)Mouldy chicken found at the restaurant in 2018 (credit: Waltham Forest Council)

During the first failed inspection in 2018, Gaby attempted to convince officers that a container of mouldy chicken was actually a traditional dish of boiled crab.During the first failed inspection in 2018, Gaby attempted to convince officers that a container of mouldy chicken was actually a traditional dish of boiled crab.

In addition to the hefty fine, Gaby is now banned from reopening his business, although he is understood to have a second restaurant in Wembley.In addition to the hefty fine, Gaby is now banned from reopening his business, although he is understood to have a second restaurant in Wembley.