Crime & Courts

Food seller fined for selling mango pickles contaminated with staphylococcus aureus

KOTA KINABALU: A food seller was fined RM1,800 in default one-month jail for selling contaminated food.

Arna Jamaludin, 41, pleaded guilty before Magistrate Stephanie Sherron Abbie today.

She had sold food made with mangoes containing Staphylococcus aureus bacteria at a stall in Metrotown Ramadan bazaar at 2.25pm on March 27.

The most common way for food to be contaminated with Staphylococcus aureus is through food handling.

Arna was charged under Regulation 397(1) of the Food Regulations 1985, punishable under Regulation 397(2) of the same regulation, which provides for a fine of up to RM10,000 or a maximum imprisonment of two years or both, upon conviction.

According to the case facts, the health enforcement team took food samples from the stall and sent them to the Kota Kinabalu Public Health laboratory for analysis.

The analysis showed that the food contained 3.4x10 ^ 2 CFU/g Staphylococcus aureus bacteria.

During mitigation, the unrepresented accused asked for leniency, saying that she had financial problems and promised not to repeat such an offence in the future.

Health prosecuting officer Arnila Ahmad urged for an appropriate sentence as a lesson to the accused as it involved public health.

She also submitted that Staphylococcus aureus is a bacteria found in food, and food can be dangerous to health if not handled properly and prepared safely.

In a separate case in the same court, a man was fined RM400 in default one-week jail for smoking in a restaurant.

Liew Chern Shiang, 19, admitted to smoking at the eatery in Lintas Square at 3.25pm on Aug 24, 2022, contravening Regulation 11(1) (d) of the Control of Tobacco Products Regulations 2004.

The offence under Regulation 11(3) of the same Regulations provides a fine of up to RM10,000 or imprisonment of up to two years upon conviction.

Both accused paid their respective fines.

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