21/Apr/2014 - Last News Update: 03:16

Italy smashes Afghan people-trafficking ring

Category: Headlines

Published: 12th Jan 2011 23:35:57

A gang which trafficked mainly Afghan migrants into Europe has been broken, European police force Europol has said.

It said 26 alleged gang members had been arrested in Italy with further arrests in Germany and France.

It said the gang was responsible for smuggling about 200 illegal migrants into Europe every month, a fifth of them children.

The migrants are thought to have paid up to 5,000 euros (£4,000) to be smuggled across Europe.

The arrests on Tuesday were the result of a two-year Europol investigation which included house searches during which some of the smuggled children were found.

Most of the migrants began their journey in Afghanistan before travelling through Pakistan, Iran and Turkey to Greece, from where they were moved on into western Europe.

Europol said those behind the gang used false EU identity documents and transferred funds through the popular Hawala network.

Piero Saviotti, a prosecutor in Rome, said some of those arrested were "suspected of involvement in international terrorism", AFP news agency reports.

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BBC News, 2011. Italy smashes Afghan people-trafficking ring [Online] (Updated 12th Jan 2011)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/121935/Italy-smashes-Afghan-people-trafficking-ring [Accessed 21st Apr 2014]

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