The investigation was initiated in November 2012 in order to determine if there has been a violation of trade regulations by cattle exporter, reported the Australian newspaper; National Affairs. It also stated some cows on the ship were pregnant, something that was not reported to Australian or Mauritian authorities prior to the export.
Sixty-five of the cattle were later found dead in the Mauritian feedlot and local police are investigating the suspicious circumstances around the deaths, amid claims they were poisoned. A spokesman of the exporting South East Asian Livestock Services stated that the cattle were examined by a veterinarian before being loaded onto the ship.
According to the Australian authorities, the Gillard government is investigating possible breaches of its regulations.
The most serious issue is why government paperwork stated that none of the cattle were pregnant when two cows allegedly gave birth during the usual ten-day journey, four cows were found to be pregnant when slaughtered and further testing revealed many more cattle pregnant in the feedlot.
The health certificate issued by the Agriculture Ministry also stated that “no cattle females were pregnant at the time of export.”