The Civil Aviation Authority will attempt to take its case to the Supreme Court after it lost its appeal against the not-guilty ruling in the Travel Republic case.

At the High Court today, Lord Justice Elias dismissed the CAA’s appeal against the not-guilty verdict given last year at Westminster Magistrates’ Court. The CAA took action against Travel Republic over an alleged breach of Atol regulations.

Elias did not refer the case to the Supreme Court, but give the CAA a certificate that allows the regulator to ask the Supreme Court to hear the case. However, there is no guarantee that the Supreme Court will hear it.

A CAA spokeswoman said: “Protecting consumers is the CAA’s priority. The public is faced with choosing between similar-looking holiday arrangements that receive very different protection when things go wrong.

“It is for this reason the CAA has decided to refer the decision to the Supreme Court, which, if it accepts the case, will decide whether or not the passengers in this case were booking holiday packages, and thus would have received Atol protection for their whole holiday.”

The CAA said it was pleased that the High Court had given it the go-ahead to take the matter further.

The spokeswoman added: “The CAA is pleased that the Divisional Court has supported consumers by indicating it will certify to the Supreme Court that this is a case of public importance. Such certification is necessary for the case to be heard by the Supreme Court.”