By Debbie James

Farmers have started court proceedings to recover money they are owed by BJP Marts Ltd amid reports that the director of the business has “gone into hiding’’.

According to an online check, the company is still in business but has not run livestock marts at the sites it leased at Haverfordwest and Carmarthen for months.

Farmers, some who are owed thousands, have not had their calls returned by the director, Jonathan Morgan.

“He has gone into hiding,’’ says Boncath farmer Peter Weeks, who is owed £4,289 for store cattle and weaned suckler calves sold at Carmarthen mart.

“It is not just farmers who have lost out, drovers and others staff haven’t been paid their wages either.’’

In August, Mr Morgan said all farmers would get paid.

Some have now instigated county court action but have been notified by the court that bailiffs have been unable to locate BJP Marts at its registered address at the Nantyci mart ground.

This remains the company’s registered address at Companies House in Cardiff.

BJP Marts Ltd is also owed money by its debtors – according to accounts published for the year ending April 30, 2019, those debtors amounted to £753,701. BJP Marts Ltd’s net liabilities in that year were £1,362,324. Its next accounts are due on January 30, 2021.

The mart site at Carmarthen is owned by Carmarthenshire County Council and leased to BJP Marts Ltd but that lease has not been renewed.

It has emerged that when the company was operating sales at Haverfordwest, Carmarthen and Llandeilo, it advertised those as operating within the Livestock Auctioneers Association’s (LAA) conditions of sale.

However the business is not a member of the LAA therefore stock which were sold at the marts were not covered by the LAA’s national conditions of sale.

“The LAA’s conditions of sales are subject to copyright and can only be used with the LAA’s permission by those companies, businesses and individuals that are members of the LAA,’’ the association stated.