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France set to end 'mad cow' probe with no charges

Published on Apr 14, 2014 9:47 PM

PARIS, April 14, 2014 (AFP) - A Paris prosecutor has recommended closing a 17-year-investigation into how "mad cow" disease killed at least 27 people in France with no charges being brought, judicial sources revealed Monday.

The recommendation, which was made back in November but was not made public, followed the conclusion of a probe launched in 1997 that aimed to establish whether anyone could be held responsible for one of the worst public health disasters of the 20th century.

The case is now with the examining magistrates in charge of the investigation, who have the final say on whether to shelve it.

The probe led to criminal charges being brought against four men who worked at two factories suspected of producing feed using the ground-up remains of sheep and cattle - the practice thought to have been behind the "mad cow" epidemic.

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