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French police arrest Spanghero managers over horsemeat scandal

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Reuters/Jean-Philippe Arles

Eight managers from the former French company Spanghero were arrested on Tuesday in connection with the horsemeat scandal earlier this year.


Police said they were being held in custody and would be questioned by investigators charged with looking into violations of public health and environmental regulations.

The arrests follow a judicial enquiry launched in March into Spanghero, for aggravated fraud and mislabelling of food products.

Spanghero, which has since been renamed La Lauragaise, was identified by the French government as the main player in the horsemeat scandal that saw mislabelled products sold in several European countries and Hong Kong.

French authorities have said Spanghero, which is based in the southern town of Castelnaudary, knowingly sold 750 tonnes of horsemeat mislabelled as beef over a period of six months.

Spanghero's sanitary licence was revoked and the company, which had employed 360 workers before the scandal, closed shop in June.

It resumed activities two months later with new management and backed by two new financiers.