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Indian restaurant owner jailed for manslaughter over peanut allergy death.

By Anne Barker

An Indian restaurant owner in Britain has been jailed for the manslaughter of a customer who died from anaphylactic shock after eating one of his curries.

Paul Wilson, 38, who was diagnosed with a severe peanut allergy as a child and knew the dangers of ingesting even the tiniest amount of peanuts, ordered a takeaway chicken marsala from Mohammed Zaman’s North Yorkshire restaurant two years ago and specifically asked for no nuts.

But the chicken marsala he was given was cooked with a groundnut mix containing peanuts.

He went into anaphylactic shock and was found slumped in his bathroom that night. He died a short time later.

 Mr Wilson’s friend Joe Kinsella said it was a shocking waste of life.

“The worst thing about it is the needlessness of his death,” he said.

“Perhaps it could have been avoided, and he could still be with us today.”

Zaman was found guilty of Mr Wilson’s manslaughter and sentenced to six years’ jail.

Prosecutors said the sentence was a lesson to all those in the catering industry that they have a duty of care to their customers.

Teenager also hospitalised after eating ‘nut-free’ curry.

The sentencing judge took into account that it was not the first time Zaman had endangered a customer’s life.

Ruby Scott, 17, had a similar reaction after eating from another of Zaman’s six restaurants, just three weeks before Mr Wilson’s death.

She also ordered a takeaway meal without nuts.

“My throat started to swell and I started getting very panicky, couldn’t really breath properly,” Ruby said.

“My friend’s dad rushed me to hospital and my mum was meeting us there and she didn’t recognise me at first, because I was all covered in hives and like purple by this point.”

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The restaurant that served Ruby later denied it had served her a meal with nuts, which her mother Marianne challenged.

“I think sometimes people think that it’s just an upset stomach or maybe makes them sick or something like that but people die from peanut allergy,” she said.

“My daughter was very, very lucky that she got to the hospital, used an Epipen and the result was a good result for my daughter.”

Zaman put profits before customer safety: prosecutors.

In his defence, Zaman claimed he was not in the restaurant when Mr Wilson was served and had left managers in charge.

But prosecutors said as the owner, Zaman was responsible for replacing almond powder in his recipes with the cheaper groundnut mix.

They also said that he was 300,000 pounds ($603,000) in debt and had put profits before customer safety.

Detective Inspector Sean Page from North Yorkshire police said Zaman acted “totally recklessly”.

“He showed no regard for his customers, public safety or even authorities that were trying to help him and show him how he should operate his business.”

Mr Wilson’s mother said her son’s death was a lesson to other restaurants to take peanut allergies much more seriously.

“Be aware of that and follow that through to the letter and for allergy sufferers, peanut sufferers, to take more care, to take note from Paul’s death,” she said.

The day after Mr Wilson’s death, inspectors visited the same restaurant to collect evidence and ordered a meal without nuts.

But when they tested it soon after it was found to have enough nuts to kill someone with a peanut allergy.

This post originally appeared on ABC News.

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Tags: current-affairs , food , health
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