Police arrest 12 linked to major smuggling ring
Greek police said yesterday that they have arrested 12 suspected members of a racket that forged documents for migrants trying to travel toward Western Europe, describing the gang as one of the biggest and most organized currently operating in Greece. The suspects – nine Pakistanis, an Egyptian national, an Iraqi and a Syrian – were detained following raids on several Athens apartments and were expected to face a prosecutor later in the day. Officers said they were seeking another 30 suspected racket members in Greece as well as accomplices in neighboring Turkey. The alleged smugglers worked in six teams, according to police, organizing travel for migrants and refugees from Turkey to Kos, in the eastern Aegean, and then from Greece to the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and then Italy. Each migrant paid the racket 3,000 euros for their services.