THE owner of a Chinese takeaway in Dudley has been slapped with a fine after hygiene chiefs discovered a series of failings.

Panda Paradise, on New Street, was discovered to have a string of hygiene failures after inspectors found rat droppings, gnawed packaging and defective ceilings during a visit in October 2017.

Owner of the restaurant Yongjin Zeng, aged 43, pleaded guilty to seven charges under food safety and hygiene regulations at Dudley Magistrates' Court on January 16.

The court heard how there was grease and debris on the floor, defective ceilings and walls and grease dripping down onto the wok range.

The company had a food safety management system which had been completed by a previous owner, but it was not being implemented, the court heard.

Zeng was ordered to pay £2558 in costs and a victim surcharge.

Councillor Gaye Partridge, cabinet member responsible for Communities, said: "Conditions at this takeaway were poor. While we prefer to work with businesses to secure compliance with the law, we will not hesitate to take legal action against food businesses proprietors who do not take advice on board and who fail to meet legal responsibilities.

"I want to reassure the public that the vast majority of food businesses in the borough are well run and compliant with hygiene and safety rules.

"More than half of all food outlets in the borough are achieving the top hygiene rating of five, with most achieving a satisfactory rating of three or more. You can check out hygiene ratings online as these will give a glimpse of what is going on in kitchens when you eat out, or behind the scenes at places being shopped at."

The premises has now changed ownership and is due to re-open under a new name.