French firm claims innocence in horsemeat controversy

French consumer affairs minister Benoit Hamon speaking overnight.

The head of the French wholesaler at the centre of the storm over the sale of horse meat labelled as beef said today that he has proof his company is innocent.

The chief of Spanghero told RTL radio that his company in southern France received a lot of horse meat along with beef, but “didn’t touch” it.

Barthelemy Aguerre provided no details and did not specify whether he reported the horse meat delivery, saying only: “I will prove my innocence.”

French consumer affairs minister Benoit Hamon said yesterday that it appeared fraudulent meat sales, apparently over several months, reached across 13 countries and 28 companies.

Mr Hamon named Spanghero as a major culprit.

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