NEWS

Smugglers bring migrants into Greece in luxury cars

TANIA GEORGIOPOULOU

TAGS: Migration

Police investigating the operation of migrant smuggling rackets in northern Greece amid a spike in arrivals believe that five suspects arrested on September 30 are linked to a larger network that was only partially dismantled in March, following a 13-month operation.

According to sources, the suspects – all Georgian nationals – are part of a gang that is responsible for smuggling undocumented migrants into Greece from Turkey in luxury cars and limousines so as to avoid police scrutiny.

The vehicles are fitted with Bulgarian license plates for their journey to the Turkish border, and these are then switched to Greek ones before the migrants are brought from the Evros crossing to the northern port city of Thessaloniki.

As many as 10 migrants are crammed into each vehicle, sometimes even in the trunk, while the cost per person ranges between 2,000 and 3,000 euros, the investigation found.

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