Human TraffickingNews

Spanish National Police dismantles a criminal organization that facilitated the irregular entry of Middle Eastern migrants into the United Kingdom

Agents of the National Police have dismantled in Torrelavega (Cantabria) an organization allegedly dedicated to facilitating the irregular entry into the United Kingdom of citizens from the Middle East using several European states, including Spain, as transit countries. The network was in charge of providing migrants with false or falsified plane tickets and documents to be able to cross the border filters, a method with which they would have managed to transfer at least 30 citizens to the United Kingdom, reporting a profit of more than 150,000 euros. The police operation has concluded with the arrest in Torrelavega of the two main leaders of the organization, who have been remanded in custody.

The investigation began thanks to information obtained through police cooperation channels. The Royal Gibraltar Police informed the National Police of the detection at the Gibraltar International Airport of a citizen who had accessed the land border with Spain and intended to travel to the United Kingdom with a forged passport.

After multiple steps and the analysis of a large amount of information provided by other European police forces within the framework of EUROPOL, the agents were able to verify the existence of this criminal organization whose main activity was the introduction into the United Kingdom of migrants from the Middle East, Mainly from Iraq and Syria.

False residence cards and passports

The criminal network, which was advertised through social networks, provided migrants who contracted their services with false or falsified residence cards or passports, generally from a European country, as well as the necessary plane tickets to travel to the United Kingdom or Ireland. , using various European states, including Spain, as transit countries. 

Although the five arrests carried out by the National Police have been carried out in Spain, the agents have been able to verify that the two main persons in charge of the organization usually operated from Belgium and Germany, countries in which the documentation was delivered to the migrants. agreed.

When the destination of the trip was the United Kingdom, the migrants, either during the flight or as soon as they landed, discarded the false identity documents and applied for international protection to the British authorities. However, if the destination was Ireland, they had to clandestinely cross the land border with the United Kingdom.

By boat from France

The investigations carried out have confirmed that the organization also had the necessary capacity and collaborators to transfer migrants to Calais (France), where they embarked on a small boat to cross the English Channel to the United Kingdom.