A Large-scale Migrant Trafficking Network has been Revealed
A large-scale operation is under way on the territory of Bulgaria, Belgium, France, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, to neutralize an organized criminal group operating on the territory of the five countries and illegally transfer foreign nationals from the countries of Afghanistan and Pakistan to European Union countries, reported Bulgarian Prosecutor's Office .
Between Bulgaria, Belgium, France, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, a Joint Investigation Team (JIT) was set up in March 2017 with the participation of Eurojust and Europol. Judicial authorities in the five countries coordinated action in their own countries with the support of Eurojust and Europol.
This group transported illegal migrants with vehicles that had built in special secrets storage place for the transported people in order not to be identified when carrying out checks by border authorities. In the JIT countries, evidence is also collected about the commission of the money laundering crime by the organized criminal group.
The investigation against this group began in 2016 in the UK and the Netherlands, which found that the group's activities also took place on the territory of three other EU countries. In Bulgaria, the investigation against the group began in early March 2017 by the Specialized Prosecutor's Office.
On the territory of Bulgaria, under the direction of the Specialized Prosecutor's Office, a procedure is being carried out on the territory of Sofia, Lovech and Vratsa. So far, 24 searches have been carried out, 17 of which with prior authorization by the Specialized Criminal Court and 7 under urgent conditions.
To date, a total of 42 people have been detained.
7 people were detained in Bulgaria in execution of European arrest warrants issued at the request of Belgium and France. 13 people are detained in Belgium, and in the United Kingdom the detained are 22.
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