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German Police Detain 10 Individuals in Operation Against Illegal Entry of Chinese Citizens


The police in Germany have recently arrested ten people, among them two lawyers, involved in an international human smuggling group.

The group is accused of illegally bringing about 350 Chinese citizens to Germany. More than 1,000 police officers searched many homes, shops and offices in western and southern Germany during the raid, SchengenVisaInfo reports.

German authorities are investigating a group of 38 suspected gang members and 147 others who allegedly paid to be smuggled by them.

Local media also report that two lawyers from the Cologne area, aged 42 and 46, are among the main suspects. However, their names have not been released due to privacy rules.

The lawyers are believed to have recruited wealthy clients, mainly from China and Arab countries, for smuggling. Clients reportedly paid between €30,000 and €350,000 to law firms for illegal visa assistance. The money was allegedly used to set up fake companies, finance fake housing and falsify salary payments. The suspects were carrying significant amounts of cash.

The fake residence permits are said to have been obtained from immigration offices in Kerpen, Solingen, Rhine-Erft and Dueren counties. One of the suspects arrested is a city employee from Dueren who allegedly took bribes to participate in the scheme.

Police raids were carried out in several states, including North Rhine-Westphalia, Schleswig-Holstein, Hesse, Rheinland-Pfalz, Baden-Wuerttemberg, Bavaria, Hamburg and Berlin. Assets were seized, and evidence was collected during raids.

German Interior Minister Nancy Faeser praised the police and prosecutors for the important operation against organized international migrant smuggling.

In 2022, federal law enforcement recorded 4,936 cases of people smuggling in Germany, marking a nearly 30 per cent increase from the previous year.

Germany Extends Border Controls with Neighbor Countries Amid Migration Concerns

In February 2024, German authorities announced they would extend internal border controls with Poland, Czechia, and Switzerland for another three months. Due to irregular migration and smuggling concerns, Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser noted that checks at these borders will continue until June 15, 2024.

Minister Faeser emphasized the need for these measures to prevent irregular migration and detect people smugglers aiding migrants in entering Germany illegally. She noted that the controls have been effective, with the Federal Police arresting approximately 560 people smugglers at these borders since October.

Temporary Border Controls Considered for Euro 2024 in Germany

Last month, Germany also said that it is planning to implement temporary border controls during Euro 2024 to enhance national security. In this regard, Minister Faeser stated that authorities are considering the introduction of these controls before the tournament begins. Euro 2024 is scheduled from June 14 to July 14, with multiple host cities across Germany.

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