• Germany's news in English

Police arrest 11 in people-smuggling ring

The Local · 26 May 2011, 15:03

Published: 26 May 2011 15:03 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Authorities rounded up a total of 11 Turkish and German suspects in the southern state of Baden-Württemberg and in North Rhine-Westphalia in western Germany, the German federal police bureau in Stuttgart said.

Turkish authorities detained another 33 suspects in the Istanbul region in February as part of the same operation, codenamed "Akku" (battery), the bureau said in a statement.

The ring, based in Turkey, operated primarily from Istanbul using trucks with hollowed-out storage spaces in which up to 113 people could hide, police said in a statement.

"Those being smuggled faced significant risks to their health and lives depending on high temperatures and the materials used to cover them in the hold," the statement said.

The trucks travelled from Istanbul via Athens by ferry to Italy, from where the illegal immigrants fanned out to other EU member states. The groups also used two yachts and chartered ships to spirit people into Italy.

"This case makes clear that organised crime is also very active in this area and has increasingly specialised in breaching the borders of the Schengen (passport-free) zone," the bureau said.

Story continues below…

"The close cooperation of the (German) federal and state police with Turkish authorities as well as other European police bureaus was the key to the investigation's success."

The Local/AFP/mdm

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

19:38 May 26, 2011 by whpmgr
What is not said here but is equally important:

1. How many people (estimates) are suspected of being importated illegally?

2. What were the nationalities of the smuggled?

3. Where are those people (with in reason? NO one will know but they need to be asking the questions and telling the public

4. How long has this been going on?

5. How much of a threat is it to the EU and to the various Countriues?

6. This is teh second time Italy comes up, why is Italy not catching this and stopping it before it turns into a huge manhunt?

7. What is teh EU doing to correct the Italian connection? Are theere fines coming to them for being a major risk to all of the EU through their negligence?

8. What is being done right now to stop it? HAve they ordered more thorough searches of the trucks? Are ports and ships from certain areas being searched heavily?

This is a major problem since once someone is inside the Shengen Zone, they wont have to produce documents again if they can pass themselves off as non tourists. I wonder how many MUSLIM Extremists have come through adn are now safely tucked away and never to be found again.

9. If people got through, what else has? Electronics, fuses, WMD, explosives? This is pretty big and in need of much more scrutiny and transparency. THe public needs to rise up and ask the questions, and not be lulled into silence by the goverments trying to keep alid on all of this. THis took major planning, and probably some customers/border officials being paid soem money to look the other way. Accounts, purchasing habits, homes, many things of Govermnet employees that could be related to the ports of Entry need to be serveiled and researched to look for anomallies and corruption.
Today's headlines
Student fined for spying on women via their webcams
Photo: DPA

Student from Munich fined €1,000 for spying on 32 different computers, using their webcams to take photographs, or record their keyboard history.

This is how much startup geeks earn in Germany
Photo: DPA

A comprehensive new survey of 143 startup founders shows how much you are likely to be earning at a German startup, from entry level all the way up to sitting on the board.

Man dies after beating for peeing near Freiburg church
The Johannes Church in Freiburg. Photo Jörgens Mi/Wikipedia

A middle-aged man from southern Germany has died after being attacked by a group of men who took umbrage with the fact he was urinating in the vicinity of a church.

The Local List
Seven German celebrities with uncanny doppelgängers
Former Berlin mayor Klaus Wowereit and actor Alec Baldwin. Photo: DPA; Gage Skidmore, Wikimedia Commons

Check out these seven look-a-likes of well known German figures - we admit that some are more tenuous than others...

Israel seeks to buy three new German submarines: report
A Dolphin class submarine. Photo: DPA

Israel is seeking to buy three more advanced submarines from Germany at a combined price of €1.2 billion, an Israeli newspaper reported Friday.

Here’s where people live the longest in Germany
Photo: DPA

Germans down south seem to know the secret to a long life.

More Germans identify as LGBT than in rest of Europe
Photo: DPA

The percentage of the German population which identifies as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender is higher than anywhere else in Europe, according to a new study.

'Reichsbürger' pair attack police in Saxony-Anhalt
File photo: DPA.

A "Reichsbürger" and his wife attacked police officers on Thursday, just a day after another Reichsbürger fatally shot an officer in Bavaria.

Five things not to miss at the Frankfurt Book Fair
Photo: DPA

From consulting a book doctor to immersing yourself in an author's world with the help of virtual reality, here are five things not to miss at this week's Frankfurt Book Fair, the world's largest publishing event.

Parents who don't get nursery spot for kid entitled to pay
Photo: DPA

The Federal Court of Justice (BGH) ruled on Thursday that parents whose children don't receive placements in nursery care are entitled to compensation.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
10 things you never knew about socialist East Germany
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
How Germans fell in love with America's favourite squash
How I ditched London for Berlin and became a published author
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
12 clever German idioms that'll make you sound like a pro
23 fascinating facts you never knew about Berlin
9 unmissable events to check out in Germany this October
10 things you never knew about German reunification
10 things you're sure to notice after an Oktoberfest visit
Germany's 10 most Instagram-able places
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
10 German films you have to watch before you die
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd