Beijing: Amid concerns over thousands of carcasses of pigs clogging Shanghai river, a court in China`s Zhejiang Province on Wednesday convicted 46 people involved in processing and selling meat from diseased pigs.
Zhang Xingbing, the principal offender who illegally purchased, slaughtered the diseased pigs and sold the meat, was sentenced to six-and-a-half years in prison and fined 800,000 yuan (USD 128,687), according to the Wenling People`s Court.
Forty-five other offenders and local vendors who sold diseased pigs to Zhang were also sentenced, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.
The ssentences handed down by the court varied from six months to six-and-a-half years.
The offenders illegally purchased, slaughtered and sold diseased pigs and processed diseased pork to sell from 2010 to 2012.
The Wenling Public Security Department launched a campaign to apprehend people involved in the case and seized the diseased pork, the court said, adding that 6,218 kilogrammes of pork products that tested positive for various viruses have been seized and will be destroyed.
Meanwhile, a dead pig dumping scandal is also swirling around Zhejiang. Neighbouring Shanghai has collected about 6,000 dead pigs from the Huangpu River since Friday, after the corpses were allegedly dumped in the river by pig farms in Zhejiang`s Jiaxing City.
Porcine circovirus was detected in one water sample taken from the Huangpu River, according to the local agricultural commission.