On Friday (4 March), the management at Kentucky Fried Chicken’s (KFC) Far East Plaza branch was fined $3,000 for allowing four customers to interact across two tables in July last year.
Back then, the COVID-19 Safety Management Measures (SMMs) were much stricter, wherein only groups of two were allowed to dine together.
Besides this offence, the court heard that KFC had received three other composition fines for breaking COVID-19 regulations.
On Friday, the representative of the fast-food joint pleaded guilty on behalf of the company to one charge of defying the COVID-19 SMMs.
Another Charge for Failing to Check for Symptoms Before Entry
Additionally, the failure to erect and adhere to procedures and control to ensure its customers were checked for symptoms of COVID-19 before being allowed entry was taken into account for the sentencing.
According to Deputy Public Prosecutor (DPP} Norman Yew, the four patrons were seen sitting and mingling across two tables as a group, but the staff did not pay any heed to the group.
The incident took place around 10:35pm on 31 July last year.
The group was later seen by enforcement officers from the Singapore Tourism Board outside the outlet.
For that, you can only say that they were really unlucky, because how many enforcement officers are out there?
It can’t be that many, but they were still caught.
DPP Yew brought up to the court that KFC had received three composition fines in Jan 2021, and twice more in Jun 2021 for contravening the COVID-19 safety protocols.
However, it’s unclear if the negligence was committed by the same outlet.
The KFC representative, who was unrepresented by any legal defence, pleaded with the court to lower the fine to lesser than $3,000.
When sentencing KFC, District Judge Ng Peng Hong mentioned KFC’s previous offences and called the group “quite a big crowd”.
For companies that are found breaching the COVID-19 rules, they could be fined up to $10,000.
With the imposition of these fines (and quadruple times), counting the money from the revenue earned doesn’t feel so finger lickin’ good anymore.
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