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lBUTTER PROSECUTIONS AT BRIDGEND.…

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l BUTTER PROSECUTIONS AT BRIDGEND. j At Bridgend Police Court on Saturday— before Alderman William Llewellyn and oiaer Magistrates-—there were several prosecutions upon the initiative, of the Maesteg Food Ccntrul Committer. Alderman Evan E. Davies, solici- tor, prosecuted in behalf of the Committee, and evidence in the cases was given by Mr. H. G. Roberts, food control inspector at Maesteg. In the fir6t case, David Williams Sons, grocer*, Bridgend (represented by Mr. Walter Williams) were summoned for selling butter wholesale to David Thomas, David Howell, and Thomas Broe., grocers, Maosteg, at a price ex- ceeding the fixe-d maximum. Defendants pleaded guilty.—Mr. Walter Powell David de- fended.—Alderman Davies, in stating the facts, psecifiically explained the bearing and effect of the various Orders under which proceedings had been taken.—The Inspector (Mr. Roberts) having given evidence, Mr., W. Powell David for the defence, said these were not in any sense cases of profiteering. His client purchased the butter for retailing, and had they retailed it they would have made a higher profit. An ur- gent request came from Maesteg for a supply of butter, and they sold it at wholesale prices. Defendants made an error in fisting the prices, owing to the difficulty of interpreting the Order, and they inadvertently overlooked the fact that the wholesale dealers from whom they pur- chased the butter hod already charged whole- salers' commission. It was not (he repeated) a case of profiteering (only a few shillings being involved), but a case in which a genuine mis- take had been made. In the next case, Messrs. Bevan and Lloyd, grocers, were summoned for supplying butter to Griffith Howells, grocer, Caerau, at a price ex- ceeding the fixed maximum. Mr. Leoline Lloyd, a mem ber of the firm, appeared, and pleaded guilty. He accepted responsibility for the error, which had been made through a misunderstand- ing of the Order, and through pressure of work. in his office staff, which had been greatly de- pleted. His firm, he added, allowed a discount of Sd. in the X, which, he thought, should be deducted from the amount taxed.—Inspector Roberts, in reply to lIT. Lloyd, admitted that the butter had been retailed to the public at the price fixed by the committee. William Powell and Son, wholesale provision merchants appeared to a like summons in re- spect of butter supplied to Emrys Davies, grocer, Maesteg. Mr. Dapho L. Powell de- fended. In this case again a plet of guilty was entered.—Alderman Davies said the distinctive feature of this case was that the butter sold was in 41b. roll*, whereas in the Order provision was only made for the sale of J-lb., lib., and 21b. packets.—Mr. Roberts having stated the facts, Mr. Dapho Powell put it to him (pointedly) Do you call it pro fit-etring P-Witne It is over the scheduled price; I call it profiteering.-Alr. Dapho Powell explained that defendants did not supply 4lb. rolls, but only 21b. rolls, and assum- ing the contention for the prosecution to be cor- rect, at most only a mistake had been made. The margin of profit was infinitismal, viz., 4,1d., and under those circumstances, he submitted it was an abuse of the procedure of the Court to have taken these proceedings. A new Order had since been made (under which the items in question need not be included) and entitling the defendants to charge interest.—In evidence, Mr William Powell, J.P. (principal of the firm) said the butter was sold in 21b. rolls. The price was fixed on that basis, and he considered the charges were in accordance with the Order. There were summonses against all the defend- ants for not suppying proper invoices showing the charges for transport and cold storage in re- spect of the butter sold. The Magistrates retired for consultation. On their return, the Chairman announced that David Williams and Sons would be fliiod k5 on each of the four summonses—J-20 in all; Bevan and Lloyd, .£5; and William Powell and Son, The charges for not delivering proper in- voices in each case were dismissed on payment of 5s. costs. John G. Marsh, provision merchant, Whit- church, Cardiff, was also summoned for an alleged breach of the Butter Order. Mr. T. Bryant (Pontypridd), for the defence, said the charge, if any, was very technical, certain charges having been inadvertently omitted from the invoice.—The Chairman said the Bench had decided that this was a purely techniacl offence, anid the summons would be dismissed on pay- ment of costs.

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