Three charged with selling horsemeat as beef in Britain

August 26, 2016 10:33 AM EDT

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LONDON (Reuters) - Three men have been charged with fraud for allegedly selling horsemeat as beef in Britain in 2012, prosecutors said on Friday.

Eating horsemeat is culturally taboo in Britain and in 2013 the country's food industry was rocked by scandal when it emerged that horsemeat was being sold in some imported beef products.

Investigations at the time found that companies including Britain's biggest supermarket Tesco and fast-food chain Burger King were selling beef products that contained horsemeat.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said Ulrik Nielsen, Alex Ostler-Beech and Andronicos Sideras are accused of conspiring together and with others to sell as beef a mixture of what was in fact horsemeat and beef.

The charges relate to activities between January and October of 2012 and follow an investigation by City of London Police.

"After carefully considering evidence from the UK and overseas, the CPS has decided that there is sufficient evidence to provide a realistic prospect of conviction and it is in the public interest to charge these three men," the CPS said a statement.

They will appear at City of London Magistrates Court on Sept. 27.

(Reporting by Sarah Young; editing by Stephen Addison)

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