Deli owner killed him­self af­ter los­ing kosher li­cence

Manchester Evening News - - NEWS - By THOMAS GE­ORGE

THE owner of a Jewish deli hanged him­self the day af­ter two of his shops were stripped of their li­cences af­ter be­ing ac­cused of sup­ply­ing non-kosher meat.

Robert Kaye was tailed back to Gough’s Deli, which he owned in Prest­wich, by three rab­bis and made to climb a lad­der to paint over a sign in­di­cat­ing that the shop sold kosher prod­ucts, an in­quest into his death was told.

Rose­man’s Deli in Liver­pool, which Mr Kaye had owned for more than a decade, was also stripped of its li­cence by Jewish au­thor­i­ties.

Mr Kaye’s part­ner told the hear­ing at Rochdale Coro­ner’s Court that he had been left ‘com­pletely bro­ken’ by the de­ci­sions. He was found dead at his home in Hollins, Bury, the fol­low­ing morn­ing.

The in­quest heard that Mr Kaye, who was de­scribed as a ‘strong, proud man,’ had also been ‘tor­tured’ by health is­sues in the leadup to his death on June 18 last year.

He had mul­ti­ple scle­ro­sis, which had been ham­per­ing his day-to­day life, and had been di­ag­nosed with de­pres­sion a year ear­lier.

Ac­cu­sa­tions were first made against Mr Kaye, 43, af­ter a mem­ber of staff at Gough’s, in Bury Old Road, re­fused to ac­cept a de­liv­ery of liver which did not ap­pear to be kosher. The or­der was des­tined for Rose­man’s.

Mr Kaye was asked to meet with Manch­ester Beth Din, an or­gan­i­sa­tion which reg­u­lates Jewish re­li­gious laws, to of­fer an ex­pla­na­tion.

At first, he told them the or­der was meant for an­other Robert Kaye, who worked at Bolton Mar­ket. But when the prod­uct sup­plier was con­tacted, they con­firmed they had been de­liv­er­ing nonkosher meat to Rose­man’s for seven years.

Mr Kaye changed his ex­cuse and claimed the pro­duce was des­tined for a nonkosher cater­ing busi­ness he was run­ning.

An in­ves­ti­ga­tion into both busi­nesses was launched by the Beth Din, in con­junc­tion with its Liver­pool coun­ter­part, and the li­cences were re­moved. His part­ner, Kathryn Davies, told the in­quest that Mr Kaye’s stress lev­els ‘went through the roof.’

In a state­ment, Rabbi Aubrey Steiner of the Manch­ester Beth Din ex­plained that it was be­lieved that non-kosher meat had been sup­plied to both shops.

He said the li­cence sys­tem needed to be trust­wor­thy as it pro­vided a guar­an­tee to those of the Jewish faith that food they were buy­ing was kosher.

Ms Davies told the hear­ing that

Mr Kaye was fol­lowed back to Gough’s by three rab­bis, who then made him climb a lad­der with a bro­ken shoul­der to paint over the Beth Din sign. Ac­cord­ing to Ms Davies, sev­eral book­ings to cater events were can­celled by clients in light of the li­cence be­ing re­moved.

The in­quest heard that Mr Kaye had hoped to con­tinue trad­ing at Gough’s with­out a li­cence, but was given three op­tions for Rose­man’s. They were to sell up, to only serve pre-pack­aged food, or to sell pre-pack­aged food and al­low a com­peti­tor to open. Ms Davies, who said her part­ner was a ‘beau­ti­ful soul, said: “He was so with­drawn. He was just say­ing ‘we will be okay,’ but he was not okay. He had not been for a long time.”

That evening, Mr Kaye spoke to a friend over the phone and told him he ‘might as well hang him­self,’ but the friend did not be­lieve he had any in­ten­tion of do­ing so. Mr Kaye went to sleep and woke up be­fore leav­ing the house shortly af­ter 7am the fol­low­ing morn­ing to take his daugh­ter to school. As he left, he shouted

Kathryn Davies ‘Babe, I’m go­ing. Love you,’ to Ms Davies. She then left to head to work and tried to ring Mr Kaye shortly af­ter 7.45am, but he failed to an­swer or re­turn the call.

Con­cerned, she re­turned home and found Mr Kaye hanged in the loft. Paramedics were called, but he was pro­nounced dead at the scene.

Pathol­o­gist Dr Emil Salmo recorded Mr Kaye’s cause of death as hang­ing.

Coro­ner Cather­ine McKenna recorded a con­clu­sion of sui­cide.

Robert Kaye

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