Brazilian officials believe they have uncovered a major scheme by human traffickers to dupe customers into believing that Brazilian-sourced beef was beef from Mexican or American cattle, NBC News reported. Officials say they’ve captured a group of cartel members who sold beef labeled as horse meat to 30,000 consumers through megastores such as Walmart.
In a press conference Friday, Agriculture Minister Blairo Maggi said the suspects might have bought 28,000 tons of the material from abroad. He said he has had to ask Japan and the European Union for beef import approval, so that suspects could face an indictment. If Japan and the EU recognize the meat from Mexico and the U.S. as beef, they could bar imports.
The group is believed to have smuggled the meat from northern Mexico and Texas to Brazil. Authorities say the South American country’s location as an international trade hub made its product legitimate for shipment to foreign markets. Investigators believe that sophisticated, professional execution allowed the traffickers to keep their identities secret and maximize profits.
Read the full story at NBC News.
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