Ferris raises lack of milk fraud prosecution
Today in the Dáil, Sinn Féin’s agriculture spokesman, Martin Ferris TD, asked Minister Simon Coveney three times, if the DPP had recommended prosecution in the case of a milk quota fraud involving half a million litres of milk. He did not get an answer.
Deputy Ferris said:
“This case has been rumbling on since the summer of 2014. It involved a milk quota irregularity involving Clongowes Wood College farm and Glanbia. Milk was moved 110 miles over a nine-month period and superlevies were avoided.
“The State Solicitor’s Office has had the file for 12 months and I have been keeping track of it. In response to a parliamentary question from me, the Minister said on 22 September 2015:
‘Having regard to an opinion from the Chief State Solicitor’s Office, and having considered all of the facts, the recommendation from my Department is that on balance, a prosecution is not warranted in this instance. All superlevies, due have been paid in full and there has been no financial loss to either to the Exchequer, to farmers or to the EU.’
“At the end of question time today, I still did not get an answer to my question which was: What was the opinion of the Chief State Solicitor's office? Did the office suggest proceeding with a prosecution?"