Belfast Telegraph

No arrests in south Armagh illegal slaughterhouse probe

BY LINDA STEWART

No one has yet been arrested in connection with the discovery of a suspected illegal slaughterhouse in south Armagh, DARD officials have revealed.

Stormont's agriculture committee was told last night that a butcher's shop in the area has been searched in connection with the probe into the black market meat trade.

The multi-agency investigation team that searched three properties last week seized three live cattle, a number of ear tags and carcass meat from premises in Forkhill. The Department of Agriculture is currently trying to identify the cattle that were seized.

However, Michael Hatch from the Department of Agriculture said there was no evidence at this stage that meat from the Forkhill premises has been placed on the market. "We are carrying out investigations to determine the supply chain for this meat," he said.

Two premises were searched in Forkhill and one in Bessbrook. Evidence of recently slaughtered cattle was found at the Forkhill premises but not the Bessbrook one, he said. The investigators are working closely with the authorities in the Republic to determine whether meat has been supplied to outlets across the border, he added.

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