The Slovenia Times

Police break up migrant smuggling ring


Koper - The police have uncovered a criminal ring that has been smuggling migrants from Bosnia through Croatia and Slovenia to Italy. According to the Koper Police Department, the ring consisted of six members - four Slovenians, one Kosovo national and one national of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

A lengthy criminal investigation, conducted by investigators from the Koper Police Department in cooperation with Italian and Croatian police, was completed on 4 August.

During the investigation, the criminal ring either attempted to smuggle or successfully smuggled at least 17 nationals of Bangladesh, Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan into Italy via Slovenia.

The members, aged between 20 and 43, used hired vans to smuggle migrants, and also delivered them food, drinks and fresh clothes. The police estimate that the group earned between EUR 68,000 and 85,000, but the exact amount was difficult to determine.

The cost of smuggling from Bosnia to Italy was between EUR 4,000 and 5,000 per person, and the cost of transport from the Croatian border through Slovenia to Italy was around EUR 350 per person.

One of the suspects was arrested by Italian authorities after fleeing from Italian police patrols. After the arrest, he was found to be a Kosovo national using forged documents.

In the final phase of the investigation, Slovenian police officers carried out two house searches in the Ljubljana area. They arrested a 31-year-old Slovenian, and a 33-year-old Bosnian national with a prior conviction.

The two suspects have been remanded in custody in Koper. They face fines and prison sentences ranging from three to 15 years.

In the first seven months of the year Slovenian police recorded 4,495 illegal border crossings, down by just over 40% year-on-year.


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