Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 24 April 2014

Farmers set to be cleared after EU law blunder

Ulster farmers prosecuted for cattle identification offences between 2000 and 2004 are to have their convictions quashed.

The 29 farmers will be cleared in the next few months after it emerged that the convictions were based on repealed European legislation.

The prosecutions are now deemed unlawful, suggesting that for four years - and throughout the 2001 foot-and-mouth outbreak - legislation regarding the traceability system was flawed. No-one had advised officials in Northern Ireland about the change.

George Carson from Garrison, Noel Graham from Kinawley, Rodney McCreery from Tamlaght, Brendan Cassidy from Derrylin, Dermot Clarke from Derrylin and Dermot Carroll from Derrygonnelly are to have hundreds of pounds in fines refunded and their convictions expunged.