UK police arrested the leader of a major migrant smuggling ring (Credit: National Crime Agency)
UK police announced Saturday that they had arrested the leader of a major migrant smuggling ring. Tarik Namik had been sentenced in December to eight years in prison and had been a fugitive since before the Justice defined his sentence.
The network was accused of having transferred at least 1,900 Kurdish immigrants from the Balkan countries to France or Germany and some of them to the United Kingdom in just 50 days. The trip was made by truck and had a price of 1,800 euros (2,000 dollars) per person.
So far, five people implicated in this crime have already been convicted, after pleading guilty to conspiring to help asylum seekers enter the UK.
Four other people had already been convicted in this case (AFP)
Of them, Hajar Ahmed, 40, from Manchester and Soran Sally, 32, from Stoke-on-Trent, were in charge of coordinating the British part of the operation.
Meanwhile, Habil Gider, 54, also from Stoke-on-Trent, acted as an escort for some of the migrants once they had entered the UK while Hardi Alizada, 32, from Nottingham, coordinated the operations. abroad, precisely on the European continent.
However, the main defendant is Namik, 45, who acted as an intermediary with other traffickers abroad. He was sentenced on December 9 in absentia and, from that moment, the authorities maintained an arrest warrant against him.
Finally, according to a statement released by the British Crime Agency (NCA), the man was captured by the authorities this Friday when he landed at Manchester airport, in the north of England, on a flight from Istanbul.
“Namik was a prolific trafficker whose criminal group placed vulnerable migrants in grave danger while making a profit. I am delighted that he is now facing justice for the crimes that he committed,” stated Richard Harrison, an NCA official.
Investigations into this criminal network began in 2017, when it already had a “sophisticated” and “lucrative” business of transporting migrants from Iraq and Iran.
The network had already set up a “sophisticated” and “lucrative” business of transporting migrants from Iraq and Iran (REUTERS)
The evidence found on Namik’s cell phone includes recordings that account for these maneuvers with thousands of people.
In one of the operations, nine people – including five children – were found helpless in the back of a truck in a parking lot. Smuggled into Skelmersdale, Lancashire, these subjects repeatedly called 999 when they became desperate for food and water. Others escaped from the truck, although all were later taken to the nearest hospital for treatment.
Other cases reported the clandestine entry of people hidden in the wind deflector of the cabin of a truck, most of them ethnic Kurds from Iran and Iraq, according to what had been declared in the trial that took place in the Court of the Manchester crown.
In that instance, Judge John Potter denounced that they had “grossly taken advantage of the unfortunate situation of these people and undermined the security of the United Kingdom.”
“They displayed a cruelty that in some cases exposed desperate people to the danger of their own selfish and greedy needs,” he added.
Finally, Harrison thanked the security forces for the operation mounted as soon as the criminal touched British soil. “Fugitives never leave our radar, and I would like to thank our colleagues at Greater Manchester Police for their help in ensuring that he was quickly apprehended the moment he set foot back in the UK,” he said.
(With information from AFP)
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