A MAN has pleaded guilty to nearly 40 food hygiene offences.

Gent Jukupi of Park Street, Devizes and Andover Road in Ludgershall entered guilty pleas at Swindon Magistrates Court to 39 food hygiene offences, following raids in October and November 2020 on illegal meat cutting operations at his hand car washing premises at these addresses.

The court heard further details on Friday, October 8 surrounding the serious hygiene breaches that led to the emergency closures executed by council officers at the time of the raids.

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The conditions and illicit manner of the meat was cut in were some of the most shocking ever encountered according to the senior officer leading the investigation.

Cabinet member for public health and protection, Ashley O'Neill said: “The conditions found at both addresses were shocking to our officers and will have put those who bought meat from this man at risk. This was a widespread meat distribution operation across the country.

"After the defendant failed to make contact with previous customers, a national food alert was issued by the Food Standards Agency to warn that meat that had been supplied was unfit for consumption.

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“I would like to thank our Food and Safety team for their hard work and their key role in getting this to court, and we hope whatever sentencing is handed out acts as a warning that this type of illegal and dangerous behaviour will not be tolerated.”

The case was referred to Swindon Crown Court on November 5 for sentencing due to the serious nature of the offences.