Warehouses win cases over excise demands for missing alcohol
Two companies escape hefty fines over consignments that never arrived
Citywest Logistical faced a €2.1 million demand and Monaghan Bottlers faced a €1 million demand. Photograph: iStock
Two bonded warehouse companies have won their legal actions over excise demands for €2 million and €1 million respectively.
The companies said they were the innocent victims of fraud committed when consignments of alcohol did not arrive at their mainland Europe destinations.
Citywest Logistical Ltd (formerly Cassidy Wines) faced a €2.1 million demand over nine consignments, mainly of Glen’s Vodka, which left its bonded warehouse in Dublin between July and December 2008 for delivery to equivalent warehouses in France and Spain.
Monaghan Bottlers of Tirkeenan, Co Monaghan, faced a €1 million demand over five consignments of mixed spirits that were also to be delivered in 2008 to the same French and Spanish bonded warehouses.
The export of alcohol between bonded warehouses in the EU means excise duty is not payable, although in some countries certain documentation is also required to be endorsed by the national authorities as part of the consignments.
In both cases the consignments never arrived.
Gardaí who investigated the matter believed, in both cases, a fraud was organised by a criminal group with a subversive background and heavy involvement in smuggling all types of produce.
After an appeal commissioner determined the companies were liable for the tax demands made by revenue, both matters were referred by the commissioner to the High Court to decide legal issues.