Lapland park pair's trial unsafe

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The Independent Online

Two brothers jailed after being accused of conning thousands of customers into visiting a Lapland-style theme park that turned out to be little more than a muddy field had their convictions overturned by appeal judges yesterday.

Victor Mears, 67, and Henry Mears, 60, were jailed for 13 months in March. However, three judges at the Court of Appeal announced yesterday that the convictions were "unsafe", having heard that Judge Mark Horton "erred" in not discharging the entire jury after one member was found to be exchanging "prejudicial" text messages with her fiancé. No application was made for a re-trial.