It searched two homes and three business premises in different parts of the Netherlands in the course of the investigation.
More than €4m have been seized on bank credits and real estate of the main suspect although no arrests have been made yet.
According to the NVWA-IOD, processed animal proteins are proteins obtained from animal by-products that are not used for human consumption. Their manufacture, transport, trade, use and export are subject to strict rules to prevent the spread of the BSE animal disease and similar diseases. Extra strict rules apply to processed animal proteins from ruminants such as cattle, sheep and goats.
The NVWA suggests that the suspects set up false constructions and falsified official documents to circumvent those rules. This made it appear on paper as if processed animal proteins from ruminants were legally transported to a country in the European Union. In reality, the parties were exported illegally to countries outside of Europe. This is not permitted, among other things, because there is no control over the return to Europe of processed animal proteins.
As a precautionary measure, the NVWA-IOD has seized on bank credits and real estate valued at €4.3m. It said that by seizing assets as a precaution, suspects can no longer steal it away.