THE solicitor who defended Great Orme farmer Daniel Jones, urged legal representatives of Conwy County Borough Council to abandon the case before it progressed to trial

David Kirwan, from Kirwans law firm, said he spoke to the council’s solicitor at early hearings before nine out of the initial 20 charges had been withdrawn and expressed his concern at the prosecution’s determination to bring what he believed was an unjustified case before a judge.

Although nine charges were later dropped, a further 11 charges remained against Daniel Jones until four days into the hearing, when Mr Kirwan approached the council’s prosecuting barrister.

Mr Kirwan said: “I impressed upon the barrister the groundless nature of the prosecution, the damage that it was doing to Mr Jones’ character and to the reputation of the council and the need to abandon the case at what was by then the eleventh hour.”

That afternoon, the remaining charges were then withdrawn and the case collapsed.

Mr Kirwan said: “After the case concluded, I found the prosecution’s claims to the Judge that the council had decided it was in the public interest to drop the case that they had so relentlessly pursued almost to the bitter end quite remarkable, if not disingenuous.

"A week on, I am appalled that in the circumstances the council has still made no public expression of regret that, at least on the face of it, at no point during the 17 month long investigation, while my client’s life was still on hold, did they review or discontinue any part of their investigation."

Mr Kirwan is now joining the Farmers Union of Wales to call for an investigation into Conwy Council’s decision to prosecute Daniel Jones, and described it as “scandalous that a local authority that caused so much emotional and financial damage to a law abiding farmer should be allowed to walk away with no questions asked”.

David said: “Daniel may have won his case, but for him the victory is somewhat hollow, as the case has cast such a dark shadow over his life for the past 17 months; a dark shadow that remains while he tries to come to terms with the lifelong debt he has had to accumulate simply to maintain his good name.

“At a time when every penny of taxpayers’ money counts like never before, I find it astounding that the council thought it necessary to spend public funds bringing his case to court, throwing my client’s life into turmoil in the process.

“I realised at a very early stage that the charges being brought against Daniel were unjustified and that the case should not progress to a court hearing, and I told the defence counsel that in the strongest possible terms.

“It is extremely regrettable to all concerned that they decided to proceed with the charges, and I wholeheartedly back the FUW’s demand that an investigation should be carried out into the decision to pursue the case.”