Breda meat trader Jan F has been fined €50,000 and given a suspended six month jail term for selling horse meat as German-produced halal beef over a two-year period prior to 2009.

The Den Bosch appeal court reduced an earlier one-year jail term, three months suspended, saying the public prosecution department had failed to prove that F earned large amounts of money through the fraud. Nor was public health at risk, the court said.

The charges date from 2007 and 2009, before the recent horse meat scandal which engulfed the European meat industry. F's company has also been investigated in connection with the latest claims.

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