Crown drops beef charges

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A HOTELIER believed to be the first person prosecuted under the beef-on-the-bone ban was celebrating yesterday after the charges against him were dropped.

Jim Sutherland, 46, was due to stand trial next year for allegedly serving beef on the bone during a roast-and-rib dinner at his hotel in the Scottish borders. But at the High Court in Edinburgh the case against him was dropped by the Crown in light of last week's decision to lift the beef-on-the- bone ban from 17 December.

The legal battle has lasted nearly two years and cost Mr Sutherland thousands of pounds. His legal team is now seeking expenses from the Crown, claiming the case should have been dropped as soon as the ban was lifted.