Thursday 9th November 2017
The Court of Appeal in London has ruled on the case of Mr Mohammed Khalique Zaman who was sentenced to six years’ imprisonment for the manslaughter of Mr Paul Wilson and charges of breaking various food safety requirements in May 2016 in the Crown Court at Teesside.
Paul Wilson sadly died in January 2014 after experiencing a severe allergic reaction known as anaphylactic shock. Mr Wilson had eaten a takeaway from the Indian Garden Restaurant in Easingwold, which Mr Zaman owned. Mr Wilson had an allergy to peanut, and the waiter from whom he had ordered the meal had specifically confirmed that it contained no nuts, but this was shown not to be the case.
The Court of Appeal has dismissed Mr Zaman’s appeal. Lord Justice Hickinbottom who sat with Mr Justice Openshaw and His Honour Judge Topolski QC, stated “we are in no doubt that the conviction was and is safe” .
The Anaphylaxis Campaign attended the Court of Appeal hearing on Thursday 12th October 2017 in which Mr Zaman appealed against his conviction and sentence.
Lynne Regent, Chief Executive of the Anaphylaxis Campaign, said about the case:
“This was a ground-breaking case; to our knowledge, it is the first time a person within the UK has been convicted of manslaughter arising out of a fatal allergic reaction. This sends a clear warning to all caterers that allergies are of the utmost seriousness. Needless to say, our heartfelt condolences go out once again to Paul Wilson’s family.
We are very appreciative that North Yorkshire County Council and Trading Standards Department took the case so seriously and that it was brought to trial. North Yorkshire Trading Standards officers carried out their responsibilities in an extremely committed and professional manner, but sadly Mr Zaman chose to ignore prior warnings and opportunities provided by them. We would also like to thank the Crown Prosecution Service and the Police for the seriousness with which they dealt with this matter. We hope this case has highlighted to the wider public and caterers the potentially devastating consequences of severe allergic reactions (anaphylaxis) and the importance of complying with all food safety regulations.
We would also like to thank all the other customers who had reported food safety issues in Mr Zaman’s restaurants to North Yorkshire Trading Standards officers. It is vital that anyone affected by food safety issues continues to report any problems to their appropriate Trading Standards or Environmental Health Officer to prevent another avoidable tragedy.”
The Anaphylaxis Campaign is the only UK wide charity focused on supporting those at risk of severe allergies and anaphylaxis. We provide information and support to people at risk of severe allergies, their parents and carers, the food and pharmaceutical industries as well as healthcare professionals; and campaign and fundraise to achieve our ultimate aim, to create a safe environment for all people at risk of severe allergies.
Over 200,000 people in the UK are at risk of such a severe allergic reaction that they are prescribed emergency adrenaline (NICE, 2011). There has been an increase in hospital admissions for allergic reactions and anaphylactic shock in England of more than a third in the past five years. Already this year we have been alerted to 9 food allergy related fatalities, most of which concern children. That is in addition to deaths from non-food allergens including drugs, venom and latex.
We have more information and advice about eating out with a severe allergy on our website.
If you have any concerns or questions, please contact our helpline team at [email protected] or call 01252 542 029.
For further information, please contact our press office via [email protected] or call 01252 893 862.  EWCA Crim 1783: http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWCA/Crim/2017/1783.html