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Seven locations searched by Gardaí as part of horsemeat investigation

Searches took place across the country as part of an ongoing Garda investigation into horsemeat sales.

Image: Eamonn Farrell/RollingNews.ie

GARDAÍ ARE CONDUCTING searches across the country this morning as part of an investigation into fraudulent practices in the horsemeat trade. 

The searches, carried out by the Garda National Bureau of Criminal Investigation, are taking place at farms, houses and commercial premises in Roscommon, Leitrim, Sligo, Westmeath and Kilkenny. 

Seven sites in total are being targeted by Gardaí as part of an ongoing investigation into the tampering of identification passports and microships for horses killed for meat in Ireland.

It is taking place in conjunction with the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine and the Food Safety Authority. 

In 2013, a scandal over horsemeat saw meat products pulled from supermarket shelves across several countries in Europe after it was revealed that horsemeat was in products listed as beef.

The scandal prompted significant concerns over public safety

Following the controversy, new checks were introduced to ensure the slaughter of horses and the sale of horsemeat was better regulated. The latest figures from the Department of Agriculture, released in April, revealed that over 6,500 horses were slaughtered for meat in Ireland last year.

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