Donegal farmers and indeed the general public will be interested to learn that Europol has made 66 arrests as part of the continued investigation into the wrongful use of horsemeat in the food chain.

Today, Europol - the European Union's law enforcement agency - said 66 people were arrested for “trading horsemeat unfit for human consumption”.

According to a breakning news update from the Irish Farmers' Journal, the agency added that it has “dismantled (a) crime group” involved in the trading of the meat. Of the 66 people arrested, 65 were arrested by Spanish police with the other person being arrested in Belgium.

Those arrested in Spain were charged with counts of animal abuse, document forgery, perverting the course of justice, crimes against public health, money laundering and being part of a criminal organisation.

According to Europol, “the operation was carried out in coordination with Belgium, France, Italy, Portugal, Romania, Switzerland and the United Kingdom”.

Horsemeat scandal

In 2013, the horsemeat scandal was exposed in Europe after Irish authorities uncovered horsemeat in products marked as beef burgers. The arrests by Europol are linked to this same scandal.

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