15 May 1998
Appeal judges hold fire on beef-on-bone case ruling
THE Governments beef-on-the-bone ban remained in doubt last night after three appeal judges reserved their decision on a court ruling that the ban was defective and vague.
A Government law officer claimed at the Appeal Court in Edinburgh that it was “absurd” of a sheriff to throw out the first prosecution under the ban.
Last month, hotelier James Sutherland claimed victory after challenging a prosecution against him at Selkirk Sheriff Court under section 3(2) of the Beef Bones Regulations.
He was alleged to have served beef-on-the-bone at a farmers dinner at his Lodge Hotel, in Carfraemill, Berwickshire, at the end of last year. The sheriff presiding over the case said the wording of the law was defective and enforceable.Colin Boyd, QC, the solicitor-general for Scotland, told the appeal judges yesterday that the sheriffs interpretation of the regulations was “completely wrong.”
He said it was because the interpretation was so “absurd” it could not stand. The courts will issue its decision at a later date.
- The Scotsman 15/05/98 page 24
- The Daily Telegraph 15/05/98 page 6