Suspected horse meat fraud is being investigated by Irish police.
Tampering with identification passports and microchips of horses presented for slaughter in Ireland is being probed, gardai said.
Planned searches were carried out at seven farms, houses and commercial premises in five counties.
The Garda National Bureau of Criminal Investigation was involved, assisted by officials from the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, and the Food Safety Authority of Ireland.
Searches were conducted in counties Roscommon, Leitrim, Sligo, Westmeath and Kilkenny.
A Garda statement said: “The searches are part of an ongoing investigation being conducted by members of the Garda National Bureau of Criminal Investigation into offences of deception… surrounding fraudulent practices regarding tampering of identification passports and microchips of horses presented for slaughter in this jurisdiction.”
The operation was supported by officers from the Criminal Assets Bureau, Garda National Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau and Garda National Cyber Crime Bureau.