66 arrested in horsemeat investigation
On Sunday, Europol said the 66 people were arrested for “trading horsemeat unfit for human consumption”. 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. The other person was 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”.
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.
In June 2016, two Britons and one Danish man were charged with fraud following the 2013 horsemeat scandal.
The investigation was carried out by City of London Police following the contamination of food products with horsemeat in January 2013.