Snakeheads demanded $10,000 per migrant, used fake Caribbean diplomatic passports

Five arrests have been made as part of the investigation coordinated by the Bari District Anti-Mafia Directorate to counter international human trafficking, called ‘Jetdream.’ The pre-trial detention orders were executed between Rome and Brussels, against four men of Egyptian nationality, three of whom live in Italy and one in Belgium, and a woman of Tunisian origin but resident in Brussels, LaPresse reports.

Two suspects are charged with the aggravating circumstance of involving minors.

For travel on private jets from Turkey to a Caribbean country, with an intermediate stop in Europe, the organization allegedly charged a price of ten thousand euros per person. The investigation found that at least five trips to five different European countries, including Italy, would take place at Bari Airport in November between October and December 2020.

Investigative activities conducted by the State Police’s Central Operations Service, together with the Mobile Squad and the Bari Border Police Office, led to the establishment of a joint investigation team, composed of police forces from Italy, Belgium, Germany, Austria and France. Also decisive was the cooperation provided by the U.S. Homeland Security Investigation – Immigration and Custom Enforcement agency and the U.S. Diplomatic Security Service. The investigation was prompted by the arrival at some European airports of private jets carrying foreign nationals of predominantly Kurdish or Iraqi nationality who, using false diplomatic documents from the state of St. Kitts & Nevis, an island state in Central America that corresponds to a small archipelago made up of two islands, had managed to board private flights from Turkey bound for the Caribbean country, with an intermediate stop in Europe. Upon reaching the stopover, the passengers declared their true nationality to the local Police Authorities, requesting political asylum.


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