Source: All England Reporter
Publisher Citation: [2002] All ER (D) 179 (Jul)
Court: Court of Justice of the European Communities, Fifth Chamber

Judges Edward (Acting President), La Pergola and Timmermans (Rapporteur)

Judgment Dates: 11 July 2002


European Community - Agriculture - Export refunds - Legislation providing for penalty in respect of false declarations - Validity of penalty - Meaning of proviso to penalty - Whether penalty in breach of principles of nulla poena sine culpa, proportionality or discrimination - Whether 'force majeure' in proviso covering false information provided in good faith - Commission Regulation (EEC) 3665/87, art 11(1).

The Case

Article11(1)(a) of Commission Regulation(EEC) 3665-87 (laying down common detailed rules for the application of the system of export refunds on agricultural products), which provided for a penalty where false information had been supplied in an application for an export refund, did not breach the principles of nulla poena sine culpa, proportionality or non-discrimination. Furthermore, the first indent of sub-paragraph three of the article was to be interpreted as meaning that false information provided in good faith by the refund applicant on the basis of inaccurate data supplied by the manufacturer of the exported goods did not constitute a case of force majeure, and accordingly could not lead to the penalty not being applied in such a case.

Practice Areas

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