A PROSECUTION against two directors of Finedon Mill, rela-ting to breaches of the 1965 Cereals Marketing Act, has been dismissed due to legal technicalities.

A judge ruled that the case against John Lister and Charles Garavan should not proceed at a hearing at Bristol Magistrates Court earlier this month. The two were personally charged, as directors, with breaching the Act by not registering Finedon Mill with the Home Grown Cereals Authority (HGCA) and not paying levies between July 1993 and July 2005. An HGCA levy should be payable by all processors of UK cereals.

District Judge Cooper ruled that the formal procedure for such a prosecution had not been properly observed. Charges brought by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) would not be heard, he said. A DEFRA spokesman said: “The case did not go ahead because of a legal technicality and the matter is therefore at an end.” The case had shown it is a legal requirement for certain purchasers of cereals to register with the HGCA for levy purposes, he added.

Finedon Mill Ltd was fined £750, with £1,500 costs at an earlier hearing, for failing to register with the HGCA. The case came after Finedon Mill called in administrators on July 12, 2005.